Sebastian’s first day of first grade coincided with his first ride on a school bus. He was so excited. I was so nervous (about the bus). We snapped photos in the morning sunshine while waiting. And waiting. And waiting. We watched families snap photos on their porches and then walk their kids to the school across the street. While we continued to wait. Ali had to ride off to work and still no bus.
I started to worry that it wouldn’t fit down our road with all the drop off traffic. So we walked to the corner to look out and wait some more. Just as we were turning to walk back to our house for the third time Tallula saw the bus. So we waved it down and got on just near the corner instead of in front of our house. A half an hour late but with less traffic on the street to navigate. There were lots of smiles from Seb and his driver made him almost laugh. One of his friends from class last year was also on the busy which calmed me immediately. I took lots of photos and stood nearby as the door closed and the driver attached the tie-downs to Seb’s chair.
While doing so, a car came up behind and honked. I told him to wait and he yelled something back so I shouted back ‘he has to time him down’. Frantically missing the word ‘wheelchair’ so I can only imagine what he thought. After the bus left the man parked and apologized saying he thought it was just a photo op when he saw my camera. If he only knew. I simply said ‘no it wasn’t’ and walked into our home, hugging Tallula tight and crying quietly over her shoulder. Another milestone accomplished but my heart was still heavy. My contacts on the ‘inside’ told me that Seb arrived smiling. And I felt better.
After school Seb replied with a resounding ‘yes’ when I asked him if he had a good day. See above photo. I’d say it was more than good. I went in for lunch to coach his new teacher and EA with feeding tips and g-tube feeding instructions. I’m super happy with his team. His teacher told Sebastian he was going to learn to read this year and told me how much he loved circle time this morning as well as sharing about his summer using his switches. She’s already programmed messages he can activate throughout the day to be independently involved.
I know it’s going to be a good year. And I’m happy I still get to pick Seb up after school. So is Tallula. So happy, that she collided with another wheelchair when she ran towards her big brother to greet him as soon as she saw him. She also had a big day sending her brother off on the bus and going to the playroom by herself while I had the lunch meeting. Though it was just for a half hour, it was a big step for both of us. She joined in his classroom afterward, and I love the place she carves out for herself there, because this is our community. She was sad that Seb wasn’t coming home with us and couldn’t wait to see him after school. Neither could I.