It's been about 6 weeks since Bennett started at his new special education preschool (to get caught up on this, re: this post). And every day at drop off, he sees the other children getting on and off the bus and has been begging me to ride... "Mama, I wanna ride the bus, too!" I told him he wasn't old enough to ride, but one day, he could. His teacher happened to be standing next to us and quickly corrected me, saying "Yes, actually he can ride the bus if he wants!" I sort of threw daggers at her with my eyes because WHAT!? I don't want my baby riding the bus!! She could see my nervousness and assured me it was perfectly safe, and that because he's in the IEP program, the bus driver would pick him up & drop him off right at our house, and he would only be riding with other preschoolers. And there would be a supervisor on the bus to help out every day.
Well even knowing all that, I declined. I just couldn't take that step yet. Well after a few more weeks of begging and pleading to ride the bus, I started thinking about it a little more. And it was only after my Husband basically told me to stop being so overprotective and let Bennett spread his wings a little more, that I decided I would give it a shot. I filled out the transportation request and next thing I know the little yellow school bus is pulling up at our house.
This morning, I prepped him and did my best to explain everything to him. He waited by the window, so excited. Then he got a more antsy, and eventually moved outside to wait.
And right on time, at 8:25am, the little yellow school bus pulled up. Bennett's eyes lit up as he ran over to it. We were greeted by a friendly bus driver and a children's aid. Quickly, though, the reality set in and Bennett started to tear up... "I don't wanna go on the bus" he said. I gave him a hug and assured him he would be okay and that the nice ladies would take good care of him and make sure he got to his teachers. He hesitated for another minute or so.. wiping away his tears and holding my hands. But the next thing he did, melted my heart. He took a deep breath, gave me a huge kiss, turned around and marched right onto the bus.
It may seem like such a small thing. But it was amazing to watch his roller coaster of emotions as he did something completely new and kind of scary. He had this huge build up and excitement to ride the school bus, I mean, we talk about in story books and on children's programs from the time they are babies, right? And then the reality of actually getting on that bus, without your Mom. That's a big deal for a Three (almost four) Year Old.
But I'm so proud of my little man. He impressed me with how quickly he was able to turn his fear into courage. And... I may or may not have cried a little when the bus drove away.
|I wasn't planning to take a picture of him sitting on the bus, but the driver actually suggested it. I could kiss her right now! ;)|
When he got home at exactly 12:10pm, he came off the bus and the first thing he said to me was "Mommy, I rode the bus!!". I could literally hear how proud he was in his tiny little voice. So happy I have these photos to look back on. I guess I can check this off the list of the things I didn't think would happen so soon. Who is this big kid??