Thursday, May 8, 2008

He's Gotcha Covered

Remember that scene from Sophie's Choice? Putting Reid on a school bus for the first time recently felt like selling him into slavery?  Maybe it's because mine are twins and I often feel like I'm always choosing one child over the other in a win/lose scenario. Maybe it's because we adopted them and I am overcompensating on a personal vow to never impose rejection on them.  Maybe it's because Reid has autism and I am practiced at hypervigilance. Maybe it's because I rode a bus to school when I was a kid and (even though I was verbal) didn't tell my mom all that happened on it. Maybe its because we homeschooled for years and I consider constant surveillance the norm. 

Whatever and however many the reasons, I just now (Reid is 13) had that quintessential experience of motherhood: waving to him from the curb having entrusted my child to that gape-mouthed orange whale, the school bus. 

This seemed an economical decision.  I had been driving a 40-mile round trip to his school twice a day.  As I put the wheels in motion, I kept my options open saying maybe he'd just ride one way to start.  I rationalized that he would mature from it.  I prayed about which driver would be assigned and what other students would be on the route. "Lord, let me know if he's ready for this." The transportation department called and I asked many questions trying to give a not too scary description of what Reid might do in the process of becoming familiar with the bus riding routine (ie. visit another student's front door, change the driver's radio station, check other riders' ipods, check out the view from other seats). It became quickly apparent to her that perhaps we should have gotten approval for an aide to ride with him.  Not wanting to be greedy, I let her run it by the powers that be.  In short order, Reid's was switched to another route where an aide rode along with the driver.
The day arrives; Reid is stoked; he skips onto the bus in his characteristic exuberant fashion. That was easy? Ugh...wait...what do I do now? The not knowing, the emotion, the fear.... I sat in prayer until the time I knew he'd reached the destination point where I'd usually dropped him off.  Now what? I'd have to wait 8 hours to maybe hear or decipher how it went. I called my mom to commiserate; no answer. I called a soul sister friend; left a message. I broke down in tears. I began my Bible study. It's still only 8:30am. These two extra hours a day could just change my life!

The phone rings. It is the sweet bus driver, Sandy, calling to tell me what a nice young man Reid is and how happy they are to have him on their bus. He did a great job with the seat belt. She thought I'd want to know!  Oh boy, would I. As our conversation continued I learned all about her. She has a grandson with autism; her husband drives a bus at the local Christian school my daughter attends; she prays every morning with some other drivers before they leave the depot. 

Could Reid be in any better hands? Now I realize that riding this bus is a privilege I could not withhold from him. Wow! Could I have planned that? No amount of my orchestration, manipulation, worrying or control could have master minded that scenario.  All I could think was, "Thank you Lord."  He seemed to reply, "I gotcha covered." The Lord has got us covered with His glorious shield--you, me, and Reid. Sometimes we realize it and sometimes we don't. This time I did.

Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.  Proverbs 30:5

Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?  Matthew 6:27

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:3-6

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1 comment:

  1. Wow, Andrea, praise God that the bus situation is so perfect. May God continue covering all of you.