Day 47/365 Kindness is Free, but It Might Make You Late

Last year we used to miss the school bus quite a bit.  I don’t know why. Something about frequent wardrobe malfunctions and generally not having our shit together by 7:15am.  Beau drew this hilarious picture last year of the three of us running to catch the bus.


The drawing is an interesting study in and of itself – my older child blaming herself for the situation, and the second born asking for art supplies for the now 30 minute drive to school with mom (always making the best of any given situation, that one!).

By the way, I don’t swear in front of my kids often, honestly. On occasion, though, “shit” just happens, you know?

Also – “for the fourth time”? She was being very, very kind.  It happened a lot.

Anyway, fast forward to this year and we have not missed the bus once!

Until today.

One of my girls was very, very upset (sad, angry, stressed) this morning. She was upset about big things, small things – ALL THE THINGS – and she wanted me to know it.

I had woken up with a headache, and after listening to her vent for about twenty minutes, I finally cracked.

I may have thrown around the words “ungrateful” and “melodramatic.”  Then she may have stormed up to her room and told me she would see me after school (in other words, she wasn’t going).  Then I may have said I would be leaving in 5 minutes with or without her in the car (a total bluff, I swear).

Downstairs she came, with tears streaming down her face.

Seeing this, I stopped….and took a breath.

I put my bags down, and I pulled her toward me.

I needed to be the bigger person.

I mean, I am literally the bigger person. I should act as such, right?

“Come here,” I said. “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry we got upset with each other. I love you. I want you to have a good day. I want us both to have a good day.”

I felt her clenched muscles loosen as she melted into me.

“I’m sorry too,” she said. “I love you.”

Sometimes, being kind takes only a few minutes, and perhaps the willingness to set one’s own ego aside.

Sometimes, kindness also makes people late.

We got to the bus stop just as the bus was pulling away.

The honest truth is, missing the bus rattled me far less than sending my daughter off to school wet with tears and feeling awful would have. We agreed it was worth missing the bus in order to not have hurriedly gone our separate ways, upset with one another (or more likely, upset with ourselves).

We also agreed that it didn’t really count as missing the bus, since we made it in time to watch it slowly drive past us as we frantically waved at the driver to stop. (Apparently she hadn’t heard the whole “kindness only takes a minute and perhaps the willingness to set ego aside” speech.  A pity, that!)

As they say – you win some, you lose some.

I’m counting this one as a win.

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