On the Bus:
I am content sitting here being gently jostled about as the bus meanders its way along my neighbourhood streets. All four of my children are sitting in seats ahead of me and I can hear them guessing at 20 questions, unhurried and engaged with each other despite the increasing percentage of teenagers amongst them. I take note of their relaxed smiles, patient continence – they don’t seem to mind this routine of bus travel despite our leaving the house an hour before we have to be where we are headed, despite the sometimes sudden herky jerky starts and stops, and despite the diverse company who climb both on and off the bus as we travel. My children smile and are untroubled, moreover, they are happy.
They sit here together – just being. This is the hidden treasure which traveling by bus affords us. Like a magical chariot – we climb aboard and enter into a world rid of anything else but going – here we play games, we watch the wide world outside the window while chatting about the clouds, the sky, and all the thoughts which float about our ears. Or we sit together watching and saying nothing. All this while we ride along familiar streets.
Added to this is the before time – the time we wait, we chat, we stand (or sit) as one unit without any other goal. Stolen time when we enjoy a bubble of unimpeded togetherness. We watch the leaves bumble by, we make predictions about the weather, I answer questions about the day before us, I listen to stories which would otherwise fall between the busy moments of home – between learning musts, house chores, daily dishes, and laundry piles. This waiting for the bus brings us out of the house, out into a space where the clutter falls away and we see each other, look each other in the eye, and stand breathing in unison.
Minutes rife with togetherness.
What comes to mind:
I am blessed. I love these moments. I may not always be looking forward to the destination but I know and treasure the time which I have had with my children because we take the bus together. And I am aware, deeply aware in my heart, that these stolen moments are coming to an end – I know changes are afoot which will further divide up our time and will eventually render these moments moot.
I could not have guess that being a non-driver would prove to be beneficial for my kids and I. I don’t doubt that we have missed out on opportunities and experiences because I could not get to certain places by bus. But we have also been given the great luxury of these stolen in-between times, times which have taught us how to wait, how to simply be present together, and how to steal time away from the busyness of life.
I am together with my children all the time – but we do not always engage in “togetherness”. I am grateful for moments which draw us outside of our norm and bring us into a space of time when we are fully present and engaged. These moments can come in many forms: family dinners, bus travel, shopping together, etc etc etc. Regardless of how they come along, they are precious so enjoy them.
#wholemama word: Togetherness. To read more stories by other fabulous mothers find the link up here: Overflow