There is an alarm on my phone that goes off to let me know I need to wrap up what I'm doing and within the next ten minutes walk to Nora's bus stop. I have it set because when Evelyn was a newborn I fell asleep holding her and awoke to my husband calling me frantically, wondering why Nora's preschool was contacting him at work telling him that they had been unable to get a hold of me and no one had picked up our then 4 year old daughter. Let's just say, I felt some guilt about that and have lived by alarms ever since.
So, the alarm on my phone did not go off last Wednesday when I needed to start wrapping things up to prepare for bus drop off. I was glad I caught it and headed to Nora's bus stop. Realizing I got there early I meandered near the lake by her stop. I was looking for snakes, spiders or anything else I need to know lives there so I can properly obsess over it. After awhile it occurred to me that I had been outside for quite awhile.
Looking at my phone I tensed up. Normally Nora would have been dropped off by then.
I waited 5 more minutes. No bus and no Nora.
It was now 15 minutes after my 6 year old was usually dropped off and I texted my husband letting him know I was scared.
He agreed that it was odd.
I waited another 5 minutes and then started picturing myself on CNN begging someone to bring my child back.
I texted my husband again and he suggested I call the school.
My heart pounded so loud I heard it in my head while I dialed her school.
The secretary answered and I tried to stay calm, as I screamed in my head, and explained that it was 30 minutes after the time my Nora's bus normally drops her off and I just wondered if they had heard from the bus company about any situations.
Her silence nearly killed me. I thought, "She knows something! She can't bear to tell me!".
Indeed she did know something.
She finally spoke and said, "Ma'am....we have not dismissed yet".
At that moment, all of this came together in my head. I looked at the clock on my phone and it read 2:57.
I was a dumbass.
I would like to say that my immediate reaction was pure relief, but I have to be honest. My first reaction was: I never gave them my name! They don't know who I am! Thank God! GET OFF THE PHONE IN CASE THEY TRACE THE CALL!
I would love to give you an explanation for how I came to think it was time to go wait for Nora, but I honestly have none. But if hard pressed, I'd probably say it has something to do with the fact that since having my children I've lost my mind.
Also, WHY did my husband not catch it either?
It is times like these that I understand why our 6 year old believes us to be idiots.