The last couple of days has been colder than normal…we are already in the 30’s and low 40’s. I have been asking the kids on the bus..”where is your jacket?”, and for the ones who willingly tell me its in their backpack, I say ” put it on, someone made you bring it, so that you wear it”…Today, five year old “angel” (that is really her name, and she fits it very well) climbed on the bus and said, “Miss Darla, look I have a jacket, and I have it on……my mom said you are a pain in her butt”, so I smiled at her and she at me, and I told her to tell her mom “thank you”. LOL Shortly after this, I unload the elementary children at school, but Angel stays on the bus with the other Kindergarten kids, as I pick up more kids to go to the Kindergarten Center. She stands up when the others have left, and promptly reminds me that I no longer say “where is my kindergarten let me see your hands? stay on the bus” I explained that I don’t need to do that anymore, because I know who they are, and they are so smart to know to stay on the bus. She looked so sad and said “Just do it one more time”. Although it seemed silly, I did it anyway. I aim to please! She came running down the aisle and gave me a big hug and said “Here I am, your kindergarten kid!” LOL
Everyday I am more amazed at how things we take for granted, like someone just talking to us, or smiling, or caring enough to say “put your jacket on” means so much to someone who doesn’t get this in thier life. I know what my childhood was like, but I did have a mom who wanted to see a jacket on…simple things, yet when they are not present leave such a void. This year I have more kids without parents than I did before, and lots with parents in Jail. Its so sad, and after the last 8 weeks, I am finally breaking through to some of them. I get a smile, and at times a laugh.
I have one little girl on the Kindergarten bus who stops in front of me every day and says “Miss Darla are you coming back for me”. But the one that broke my heart today is Madeline. Her hair is never combed, and is always very very quiet, no smile, fear all over her, and I asked her today if she would be my line leader and lead the kids out of the bus, and she just came closer to me and said “do you think you could be my mom?” I don’t know her story, but my prayers are going up for her and the other ones on my bus. Everyday, I pray “please don’t let them leave here with out you”… I get weary and tired, and then these little ones break my heart, and make me laugh, and fill me with great joy…and I remember why God put me in the bus, and after turning my world upside down to get me here..OH how HE loves them!
Filed under bus kiddos, fatherless children, God, Jesus, laughter, life, Love, outreach, prayer, princess entries, reflections
6 1/2 hours a day, I am in this….
If this bus could speak…I wonder what stories it would tell, as I have plenty of my own! Through these doors service to the King begins on a daily basis.
357 different children from the ages of 5 to 18 get on my bus, twice a day. For some of them I am the only smile they will get today. And after the first week of school each year they truly feel like my children. Sometimes I could just send them to their room, and other times I could hug them and never let go.
I recently was ill (which is normal for me about twice a year), and was not in the bus for a week. When I returned this week, these kids were so happy to see me. I found that strange, and even teased a few.. “okay whatever you want..NO” But my Kindergarten bus was ecstatic..I mean squeals of delight and echos of “Miss Darla came back”…well yea it made me feel good, but it made it more clear to me how badly children are hurting and really need someone to just love on them even for a few minutes each day. I got “high fives” “knuckles”, hugs, and singing kiddos on the bus.
Some of you remember when I started this adventure and could not figure out why God wanted me to do this..and you remember how it all just happened and before I really knew it..here I am!
Now I have a different picture in my mind…Jesus saying..”let the children come to me”…I have 5 year olds who can explain very well what Social Services is, and speak freely of foster care, what the judge said…and are too young to carry a problem with telling you “mommy and daddy are in jail, but maybe later I can go home”…and this life for them, they dont know another. Lots of children abandoned by thier mothers, one said “when my mom knows what her life is all about, she is going to come back for me..so my dad is kind of sad…but we still have fun”…sad…you don’t have to ask these kids anything, they willingly tell you.
I have a boy about 10 years old has been hard to deal with the first couple weeks, but he is very pleasant on my bus now..he sang to me one day this week, and yesterday showed me a moving cartoon he made in is book…
I don’t seem to have the problems on my bus that lots do, maybe its because I pray for my kids on my bus, maybe its because God rides my bus. But I do pray that HE won’t let even one of them leave this earth without HIM. I am believing HE is going to do that. How beautiful to see HIM love on these ones the world ignores. “Such is the kingdom of heaven”…
Today…one of my problem little boys, soon to be my best buddy! (LOL he doesn’t know it yet) decided today that he can’t sit next to a girl, although that is the last place I have for him since every seat has a problem. He approached me and said…”I just can’t..she is evil…and I think she bites” hahahaha I assured him if he would just take the seat he is to be in, then he wouldn’t have to take that risk.
The Bus company just sat me through an hour meeting on how to turn your bus in an intersection. WHAT!!! Some of these people have been doing it 30+ years…some how I think we should learn the proper way in training, and maybe before we actually take the bus out and transport 150 kids. just saying…
Because Saturday comes before Sunday (yes, I am a smrt one), I like to get things done so that Sunday is funday, full of rest, family, and reflection on the many blessings God pours out on me. HE has asked us to keep one day aside for HIM, so although we could debate the saturday/sunday which is the sabbath…I choose Sunday due to its the day I go to church. (wow that was a bunny trail..you all still with me?)
Here are some things I did today?
I made some chili sauce from tomatoes from my Mil’s garden, so of course I had to make homemade chili! and what is chili without cornbread? Yes, Hubs has a happy belly now.
My hubs works a lot of hours, and plays in two bands not including the praise team at church…Love him, but it doesn’t look like I do…with that hair so wild and looking like he crawled out of bed two seconds ago…
YUP! I shaved his head…I love it! Mr. Clean is my favorite! He really does like it, and it was his idea…I have done this before. I just love some bald men..if I didn’t drink so much coffee, I would try the straight edge..but I am thinking I should leave that to the professionals.
Went shopping for household things, and had frappicinos with my Trina, and some light cleaning…
Now I need to make a seating chart for elementary kids (61 on my elementary bus), they really need a seat, and I really need to know all their names. Seems I only ever know the naughty ones…and a couple of the quiet ones…this week I am going to know them all! Yes, simple things make me happy! Home made food, shaving hubs head, and seating kids so I can find them.
What did you do today?
Things that were told to me just this morning…
6year old- beautiful dress- Miss Darla don’t I look just like a princess? (obviously this child has won my heart)
6year old- thats because I am a princess-Big smile..(I did tell you she stole my heart)
Me- you are speaking truth! Hope you don’t ever forget that you are a princess.
6year old boy-( my tylenol kid from last year) Miss Darla, I tried to bring you tylenol today, because its going to be hot..my mom said you have to get your own!
Me- hahahahahhahahahahhaha thanks for trying.
9year old boy-(my sheep whisperer from last year) Miss Darla, that bunny you gave me in the summer is doing real good. Today I am going to try to put a leash on him, and go herd cows.
Me- I don’t think that is a good idea.
9year old- (Laughing) yesterday I let him in the barn, and the cows run from him (still laughing), my dad was so mad..it was great! (big smile)
10 year old girl- Miss Darla, why do boys stink?
Me- (trying not to agree or laugh) I don’t know, maybe its a boy thing, they grow up and they don’t stink then.
10 year old – these boys on the bus stink…and every grown up boy I know stinks too…can I sit with a girl?
Me- please sit with a girl….and its good that you don’t like boys yet..
!0 year old girl- yea! they stink…eeewwwwwwwwwwww
I haven’t had much time to blog lately.
The Bus is great…the kids are too cute for words (yes, even the older ones), and God just amazes me at how HE fills my heart with love for them. I looked into my mirror today and could see the inside of the entire bus…just gazing at them…each one so different from the next..each one beautiful in a different way…different races/ethnic backgrounds. They don’t see each other as different. As I listened to their chatter…I looked again…and realized deep in my heart of hearts…Created in the image of my God. HIS great love for them, a plan for each one, and that HE would allow me to see that or even be part of this…I can’t understand. For those of you who are praying for me..Thank you!
Today as one little red haired sweetie smiled for the first time this week, my heart remembered why I am doing this. I had to tell her just how beautiful she is, and that red hair is my favorite!! She had a little porcelian smile, and said “Thank you, no one likes red hair”… I DO. And she was just the happiest little thing I seen so far this year.
We are leaving tomorrow evening to visit Papa and Mama….we are very excited! So I will check in when I can.