Saturday, October 3
Bus Full of Bullies
As a kid I was not one for arguing or fighting. Not at home and certainly not at school. Besides *maybe* hitting my sister, Kyle, for stealing one of my many coveted My Little Ponies I had never hit anyone. Until that day. That day on the bus.
Every morning, when my Mom was already at work my Dad was the one that made us picture perfect for school. *If* my Dad got us ready in time we rode the bus to Walnut Grove Elementary School. Riding the bus in the morning was questionable. However, in the afternoon, when that 3:30 p.m. dismissal bell rang I knew to high tail it to Larry's Bus #52 to go home.
The bus ride home was by far not my favorite part of the day. I was tired. The kids were loud and the back of my brown legs always stuck to the synthetic leather seat. Not to mention the fact I was always perturbed at why this bus, that transported kids, had no seat belts.
I could never forget that I was brown on the bus. I was teased mercilessly. I am not sure when it started, but every afternoon... without fail I was reminded in the nastiest of ways. Black-y. Brownie. Afro-head. Curly top. Occasionally the N word would fly. One I couldn't take anymore. I had enough. A boy, Brett, called me an Oreo. He called me an Oreo. I was up and out of my synthetic leather, non-seat belted seat so fast I think I may have had lightning up my butt. I punched him. I balled up my fist as tight at I could and I punched him. I punched him once. As hard as I possibly could in the stomach. Larry's Bus #52 was never the same.
I can honestly say that now, looking back, the only thing that kept me from a major meltdown everyday of my Walnut Grove Elementary School life was knowing my Mom would be waiting for my siblings and me at the bus stop. Everyday. Monday though Friday. I knew she would waiting for us so we could get the mail and walk home together.
I only told his story because this week is Bully Prevention Week and bullies are real! I am sure almost everyone can remember a time they were bullied. It stinks! Being bullied can reshape how a child looks at themselves. It can make them feel less than they are. I hope that this week everyone with kids, grand kids, nieces, nephews, etc. will remember to talk to them about what bullying is and how they can make sure that they are not one!
*Please know that I am in NO way saying that violence is a good way to address those pesky bullies! When kids are pushed to their brink, however, they can act out of the ordinary. I mean I only fight when My Ponies need me!*