The Wheels on the Bus

Hanna - Mount Morris, Illinois
Entered on September 16, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: children
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The Wheels on the Bus

Waking up to the sound of kids put an early damper on my day. I know how children get with their songs and cartoons and the way one side of their hair looks different from the other. Despite the years of torture and annoyance, I now believe kids are the main purpose for my life.

I’ve been around children my whole life, coming from a house where my mom ran a daycare. Growing up, children were the one thing that I thought would never be any bigger a part of my life than they were at that time.

I hated the nagging “Why? Why? Why?” and that they wanted the same lunch every day. But despite this, I helped, which I didn’t necessarily mind. I enjoyed the babies. The toddlers weren’t so bad all the time. The elementary kids liked to help me help my mom, so I put them to work. I learned how to work them; what got the wheels on their buses turning, and what kind of satisfaction would get them to help.

Once I was old enough to not be around as much, I started appreciating the kids more. I liked my noise occasionally, so once there wasn’t any, I felt out of place. I realized that I was enjoying what I was doing and wanted to get better at it.

As my different skills improved, like storytelling at the drop of a hat, constructing Lego houses, and perfecting the pigtail, the kids and I got along better. Once I learned to find patience, I found that they weren’t little monsters and that all they wanted was someone to look up to. So I decided I’d become that person.

The more I loved the feeling of knowing I was making a difference, the more I wanted to work with the kids. So when looking for my first job, I wanted something along the lines of a mentor. The position I found was a job working as an aide for an after school program.

By the time I started, I had perfected many arts, including the tone and volume of voice that would make the entire room turn to a hush in 1.7 seconds. The kids had a respect for me that I believe came with the experience from helping my mom.

After working for the past three years, I’ve learned almost everything I need to know about kids. I’ve learned that a little patience goes a LONG way, and that “boo boo’s” can be cured by a simple sidetracking story. I’ve also learned that by becoming a kid again everyday for a few hours, I was coming into my own as an adult. So, now when I hear the sound of videogames or see crazy hair, it only makes my day that much better.