The Big Yellow Box

My 4 and 5 year olds are in love with the bus.
They frequently beg to ride the bus.

But I have a confession:  I am scared to death of them.

I know the lady in charge of transportation in our county.
I know which bus driver my kids would have.
And I only live about 2 miles from each of their schools.
It’s not like they’d be on the bus for long or ride very far at all.

I should be ok with this, right?

But I have another confession:  Picking them up every day is starting to wear me down.

Nine times out of ten I have to wake up Asa to go do pick ups.
And when I go to get Lydia, there isn’t a pick-up line
(At least not one that I am eligible to use)
And I have to get him out and take him in to get her.

After just being woken up, he’s usually not in the best of moods
And carrying him is like carrying a sack of potatoes-
That squirm.

So what’s holding me back?
Why do I not want them to ride the bus?

I don’t know.

I never rode the bus growing up
But a lot of kids ride the bus.

My fear?
It’s irrational.
And I know it.

If they ride the bus, I won’t see Lydia’s teacher every day.
Sure, she can write a note and put it in her folder…
But I won’t be getting those little updates that she tells me,
The ones that I’d otherwise not know because Lydia surely doesn’t mention any of it.

And when I’m waiting in car-rider line, I love watching Carter from a distance;
He doesn’t even know I’m watching.
And he looks so big and so little all at once…
And I…I…well, everyday… I love that moment.

If they ride the bus, we can still talk about our “3 favorite things”
(which is our routine and my tactic to get them to tell me about their day).
It’ll just be as we come into the house.

If they ride the bus, they will actually get home earlier than we do now.
(And I won’t be forced to get dressed every day if I don’t want to.)
(Wait.  That’s probably not a good thing, is it?)

If they ride the bus, they will be happy.
Asa will be happy(or at least well-rested).
And I?
I’ll probably love it.
(Especially once the new baby gets here!)

And what’s to lose, right?
If I (or they) miss car-rider line too much, they can always go back to being pick-ups.

So what about you?
Do your kids ride the bus?
Why or why not?

11 Responses to The Big Yellow Box
  1. Marybeth Delay
    November 9, 2010 | 5:39 pm

    WHen I was in elementary school I begged my mom to let me ride the bus!!! I LOVED it!!! I say try it out for 1 week and see how it goes. If after that you’re uncomfortable with it, then go back to picking them up. Or maybe you could let them ride the bus except on Fridays and call that ” Fun Fridays” where mom picks up the kiddos!!!

  2. Lauren
    November 9, 2010 | 5:51 pm

    I know exactly how you feel. I finally broke down and let the girls ride the bus home. They love it and it was so much easier. It will be great when the new baby comes. Think about having to get Asa and new baby out and walking into Lydia’s school EVERYDAY !!!! I am sure they would bring her out to you then but you still have to load them up in the car.

    When I feel like I am missing the teacher interaction I just tell them I will pick them up that day.

    Give it a try!!!!

  3. Rachael Mercer
    November 9, 2010 | 5:55 pm

    I began letting the kids ride the bus home when MKM was born and I was having to wake her to go get them…then we moved to a new city and things started over, and I picked them up until we were looking to cut as many expenses as possible (double mortgage and all)….and we looked at it as a way to save a few $$ and at the same time still allow N & M to finish out their naps. When we moved yet again (but same city), we moved across district lines and had no choice but to pick up the kids for about 2 mos….until we moved them to the school in the district in which we live now, and they ride the bus home….and I pray, when I think about them on the bus….but mostly, they’re fine and we’ve really enjoyed it!!

  4. Cindy
    November 9, 2010 | 6:09 pm

    Will they be riding the bus together? If so then definitely let them! I rode the bus when I was a kid and it’s not always fabulous, but it’s nothing to be scared of either. The important thing is to let the teacher know that you’ve decided to try the bus so that Lydia doesn’t wind up waiting forever at school. There’s probably something you have to fill out before they can ride anyway.

  5. Grandma
    November 9, 2010 | 6:17 pm

    I agree with Marybeth. If it works out, it will be so much easier when the baby comes. Marshall rode the bus home only when in elementary school. That’s only because Doug could drop him and the others off on his way to work. Teddy rode the bus to and from school when our zone was changed to Cleveland Rd Elem. I watched him get on the bus and Doug met him in the afternoons.

  6. Liz Sanders
    November 9, 2010 | 6:31 pm

    I rode the bus, all throughout school until I got a car. You know that the bus out our way was rough, I’m sure. I hated it.
    I take the kids to school and pick them up everyday. They would rather ride the bus. To them it is something fun, and in our neighborhood I wouldn’t have an issue. I have always said that it was one of my jobs to pick them up since I was a stay at home mom.
    That kinda bites me in the butt when it’s raining and I have to get 2 kids up from naps, out in the cold, rain to pick them up.
    Also this past January, Bella was only a month old, so getting her out in the cold was hard.
    Now when Peyton and Wyatt are in 2 different schools next year I might need to reconsider one of them riding the bus. The good thing about this system down here is that all the schools start at a different time, and the buses carry all schools separately, meaning they don’t ride high-schoolers, and elementary school kids together.
    I’m with you, it would be easier, and lots of kids ride the bus. Some things are hard to change, because we love the ritual. You can always give it a try and see how it works. Nothing wrong in that.

  7. punkinmama
    November 10, 2010 | 11:56 am

    I think for your sanity (especially once the new baby arrives), you need to try it. Try it now *before* the baby comes, so you know you’ll be ready then. At least a couple of times a week. I bet you’ll find it much more freeing. But if it doesn’t go well, you can always go back to picking them up… but I can’t imagine doing that when you have to take Asa & a baby.

    You can do it. The bus is a fun thing for kids (until high school when none of the “cool kids” ride the bus, and they’ll be begging you to not make them ride it too)!

  8. domestic extraordinaire
    November 10, 2010 | 5:11 pm

    A thought. Just because you live close to the school doesn’t mean that they won’t be on the bus for a long time. We lived less than 2 miles from the school but my girls were on it for nearly an hour because they were one of the first picked up and the last dropped off, so I would probably ask other parents in the area how long the bus ride is. I would maybe let them do it a day or two a week to try it out. It may be successful, but you may end up having to take your kids back and forth to school because one of your children got made at another child on the bus and bit him…hard.

    Here’s hoping you don’t have any biters….LOL.

  9. Mary @ A Simple Twist of Faith
    November 11, 2010 | 1:19 am

    That’s a hard one, will they be together? I never rode the bus growing up, my grandma lived within walking distance of my kindergarten. In elementary school, I WALKED with my sister. Could you imagine having your kids do that today?

  10. Doll Clothes Gal Pal
    November 11, 2010 | 6:51 am

    The bus is fine love. Don’t worry about a thing, there are also a lot of friendly people that rides the bus. 🙂

  11. designHer Momma
    November 11, 2010 | 8:07 pm

    you need to give this a whirl. seriously.