Thursday, January 14, 2010

What Do You Do?

What do you do when you feel like you do your best, give your all, and it's just not good enough? What do you do when your frustration has built to the point where you feel like perhaps it's just time to move on?

Tomorrow I'll be fine. Today I just want to vent. Please, do not read this if you're sick of hearing about my bus driving stories.

Today I was politely *sarcasm intended* told to "please be more kind to the immigrant moms who bring their babies into the baby clinic". The school I drive for holds an immunization clinic every Thursday. Today, one of the "immigrant moms" was parked in the bus zone.

Before I tell my story further, let me explain what my week has been like at THIS school. Today is the very first day there has been ANY SUPERVISION AT ALL. Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, the kids have been left to run wild. As a result, there was a fight outside my bus (no teacher was around), a kid was hit in the eye with a snowball and cried on their entire bus ride home (no teacher was around), a parent informed me that one of my students was hanging around the back of my bus - AGAIN - SNIFFING EXHAUST.....because NO TEACHER WAS AROUND. And, because NO STINKIN' TEACHER WAS AROUND, yesterday when I pulled up, the kids were scattered hither and yon. About a dozen got on while I had to wait for the rest to finish playing on the playground and got on at their leisure. I left a message with the principal on Tuesday. She did not return my call. In fact, it is the third message I have left with the principal and vice principal since December and none of my calls have been returned.

Yes. I guess I am a little frustrated. So much so, that I told my office yesterday that I was through dealing with the teachers of this school, that from now on they would have to go through the office if they wanted to talk TO ME.

Back to today. When I pulled up in front of the school and had no spot to park, I put on my four-way flashers and determined to block in the van that was in my spot. I then put a notice on their windshield. It is not a bad notice, honest. It is one that explains that they are parked in a school bus zone and to please not park there again unless they want their ankles broken.

A lady soon came out with a baby carrier. I went out and very sternly told her she was parked in the bus zone and to please not park there again. She told me she did not understand that she couldn't. I asked her how she could not understand a sign that told her so. I then told her she had to wait until I left. I WAS NOT HAVING A REPEAT INCIDENT WHERE THE DRIVER ALMOST RAN OVER ONE OF MY KIDS. I then waited at the bottom of the steps to make sure she didn't leave. In spite of my warning, she tried to leave twice, and twice, I put my hand out and VERY STERNLY told her she COULD NOT.

That is the story with no exaggeration. I was informed by the school nurse that she didn't appreciate how I handled this because, after all, she is from a foreign country. She then stood there WITH THE STINKIN' SCHOOL PRINCIPAL WHO HAS REFUSED TO RETURN ANY OF MY CALLS, and another teacher and they had a "mini conference". Do you think the principal would come and talk to me?

So I wonder....people from foreign countries are allowed to drive in our country without understanding the road signs and laws of this land? I wonder how this nurse would feel if this driver from another country HIT ONE OF THOSE KIDS?!!! Yes folks. I was very stern to a woman from another country who was carrying a baby carrier. But I was BEYOND FRUSTRATED, and frankly, I still believe I had every reason to be stern.

The two people in my office that I would talk to about this incident are gone. One for the day, and the other for the week.

Was I really nasty, folks? Am I out of my head?

I have honestly never come so close to quitting before.

And I think. Yeah...I'm really unkind to immigrants. I just try to help them communicate better by figuring out how to speak their language (unlike the school), and cry over their situations. Yup. That's me.

I'm done my rant.


Rachel said...

Dear Frustrated Darla- The first and most important part of your job is to protect the children on your bus. Apparently, you are the only person involved that has figured this out. As long as you are doing your job to the best of your ability- which includes being stern to immigrants carrying baby carriers- then you are doing the right thing. Unfortunately, others may not agree, but your kids are safe and they know you care. And, in the end, that's what matters.
So many cheers to you for standing up for your kids in the face of great adversity!! I am proud of you, and God will bless your efforts (even if it is eventually....).
Much love,
Rachel G.

Rachel Roberts said...

Immigrant or not, it's just plain ignorant to a) park in a school bus zone, and b) try to DRIVE OUT OF a school bus zone with kids running aimlessly around.

Ugh... I was annoyed just reading the story! lol!

Anonymous said...

can you pick up my granddaughers THANKS

Rachel Peterson said...

Yes, and this is coming from a University student. I do not mean any racism with this comment, so throw your tomatoes at someone who is actually being racist. However, immigrants, people who CHOSE to be here in Canada are given preferential treatment, or at the very least people THINK they should be given preferential treatment. They have drivers tests in other languages for pities sake, YOU NEED TO LEARN THE LANGUAGE OF THE COUNTRY YOU ARE IN BEFORE YOU CAN DRIVE IN IT. Anyways, this is something I get hopped up about.

Mrs. Wizzle said...

The school could be proactive. Our school has a person out in the morning to greet the kids and to check if there was any problems on the bus. Our school has someone out with the kids when they get on the bus in the afternoon. The students are dismissed from their classes and go directly to the buses, they do not pass go, they do not collect 200 dollars. The greeting in the morning gives a positive note to the kids arriving, and the adult there gives immediate dealing with any problems on the bus as well as people who park in the bus zone are shooed away immediately. As well the kids are said good by to when they leave. I guarantee that the two who do buses, and they do it every day, know the names of those kids. I like my school very much because of the way they are proactive and the way they deal with kids.

It has no bearing on the immigrancy of the person or not. In order to get a license, every body is supposed to be able to recognize the signs of the road. No parking is one of them. I am sure.

Darla said...

I really appreciate all of the comments of support from y'all. It's funny, once the "first two Rachel's" commented, I would have been very disappointed if the third didn't!

Mrs. Wizzle, can I pretty please come and drive for your school? Or could you pretty please send the person you have in charge there to come and give some training to some "people" in this school?

Truthfully, ladies, I am at a crossroads. I will be deciding very soon whether it's time to hang up my driver's hat or not, which is pretty definite if I have to continue driving for this school. I find it very difficult to be a disconnected driver - something someone else told me today that I must be - and if that is the case then I am truly in the wrong job.

I am finding it more and more appealing to getting back to being a good old homeschooling, stay-at-home mom who just concentrates on her home and family, and learns to tighten the old purse strings much, much more.

We'll see what the future holds...