"Curse that Heather!" Peter screamed as the bus rumbled away.
Uh-oh, I thought. Heather, the third grade bully that rides Peter's and Sarah's bus must be at it again.
"What did Heather do this time?" I asked.
Peter just shook his fist at the bus and said, "I hate her! I want to kill her!"
Not words that you want to hear coming from your sweet seven-year-old son. Actually not words you want to hear coming from anyone.
"What did she do honey?" I questioned again. "Was she yelling again? Was she cussing again?"
Big tears squeezed from the corners of his eyes as he crossed his arms to his chest and shook his head. She must have called him a name, I thought to myself. He is more upset than normal over Heather's behavior.
Heather has a history of yelling at other kids, using inappropriate language and just being a "jerk" as Peter likes to put it. But she usually leaves Peter and Sarah alone but I could tell from Peter's reaction that her venom must have been directed at him this time.
"Honey, did she call you a name?"
He shook his head yes and refused to tell me what she called him. And to me it really didn't matter.
This bully has upset my son to the point of tears. And even though the school is only one mile from my house and they are on the bus less than 15 minutes from the time school lets out to the time they are at my driveway, this girl is making that bus ride seem like 1 hour and 15 minutes every afternoon as my kids are forced to listen to her loud mouth and hope that she leaves them alone.
"Do you want to start being a car-rider?" I asked.
"Really? Can you start picking us up?" he said as a smile started to spread across his face.
I know I can't protect my kids from all of the bullies they are going to come in contact with as they go through school, but I can eliminate this one from their day fairly easily. They've been putting up with her since September and enough is enough.
After religious education yesterday, we were leaving the church and Peter mumbled something that was indiscernible. "What? Say that again so I can understand you."
More mumbling. "Honey, what?"
"Noodle Head. Heather called me a Noodle Head."
I had to stifle my giggles. All afternoon vulgar words had been running through my head. What cruel name had this Heather girl called my sweet son?
Noodle Head? That's not the vile and vicious name I had come up with.
Noodle Head? That's something Eddie Haskel might have called the Beaver.
But it doesn't matter what the name was, I suppose. Because I'm still going to start picking them up.
I remember riding the bus as a child and I remember hating it. And there's no reason for me not to pick them up. I live one mile from the school, I have a car and I'm a Stay-At-Home Mom. I guess sitting in a car-rider line is just part of the job description. My destiny even.