As the wonderful season of autumn / fall approaches us, I wanted to create an original writing prompt series to celebrate!
I invite everyone who sees this to participate, if you choose.
The idea is to look at the prompt, take at least five minutes on three Fridays in September 2019, and come up with a story/poem/scene, or whatever strikes your fancy with those words.
I may extend this further than the end of September, but we shall see. Until then, have fun! You can use the image at the top of this post – Just please make sure to credit it.
Here we go!
- September 13th: Apple Picking
- September 20th: Fall Leaves
- September 27th: Pumpkin Patch
The kids squealed as the bus kicked up dust. They were finally here.
Samantha turned toward the window, pressing her forehead to the cool glass. As a first- year teacher, she’d been all gung-ho when school started in early September. She’d had so many fun ideas for her second-grade class.
Now, on a hot bus with three second-grade classes, she was regretting so many things. Not becoming a teacher. Not that. She’d wanted to do that since she’d been in first grade. That was a dream come true.
But, if she’d thought a field trip with 47 kids to the local pumpkin patch on a Friday was a a good idea, she was quickly being proven wrong.
The bus had to be changed at the last minute. She’d experienced the wonderful laws of Murphy at least once every day this week.
She wanted the screaming to stop.
“Mrs. Davis! When can we get off the bus?”
Samantha smiled. The small, sweet voices of her kids were always welcome. It helped quiet the other screaming.
“Just a few more minutes, Ashlyn, okay? I need to do a head count and make sure everyone has their buddy. How does that sound?”
Eight-year-old Ashlyn smiled up at the raven-haired teacher. She’d wanted Mrs. Davis as her teacher this year, prayed for it, but had been assigned Mr. Frost instead.
“Could you go back to your seat, please?”
Ashlyn grinned. “Sure, Mrs. Davis. I’ve been looking forward to this field trip for days!”
Samantha smiled, and hoped Ashlyn hadn’t noticed the pained look in the 24-year-old’s eyes. Kids noticed everything. She knew it was a migraine. And the screaming was still there. Sometimes, she felt like a child, wanting to put her hands over her ears and squeezing her eyes shut, to block it all out.
She breathed deeply, three full times like her therapist had been teaching her. A welcome hush fell over the bus. As she stood next to the driver with the clipboard, all eyes focused on her.
“Okay, Treetop Elementary second-graders! Who’s ready to get this field trip started?”
The bus erupted. The kids’ yells and screams drowned out the others. Samantha smiled, grateful for the momentary distraction.
As Samantha ran through the rules, head count, buddies, and questions, she started to relax. Field trips were a lot of work. Almost too much. But, seeing the kids’ excitement bubbling over like a cauldron was completely worth it.
Mr. Frost looked at Samantha, giving her an encouraging nod. She appreciated the handful of colleagues that had already taken her under their wing. She was glad Mr. Frost and Ms. Gaddis were part of the second-grade team.
“Okay, Treetop second-graders! Let’s get off this bus and take over the pumpkin patch!”
As Samantha stepped aside, she was proud of the kids. They were respectful, and were following instructions and directions really well. Mr. Frost and Ms. Gaddis took over. Samantha stayed behind until the last kid was off the bus, checking for any stragglers or issues. Vomit was not fun, but important to look for.
Finding nothing amiss, Samantha let out another breath. Mr. Frost turned and gave her a thumbs-up.
She climbed off the bus, thanking the driver, smiling as the kids were ready to disappear into the sea of orange pumpkins and the rest of the fall colors.
The screaming was still there. But it wasn’t coming from the kids.
She steadied herself, focusing on a place to sit down. As she found a hay bale, the voices inside her head were telling her horrible things. Frightening things.
She looked up, trying desperately to focus on something else. Anything else. She smiled again as she watched the kids enjoy everything the pumpkin patch had to offer. And they’d only been there for five minutes.
She knew she couldn’t sit on the hay bale forever. At that moment, seven-year-old Fred came into Samantha’s view.
“Come on, Mrs. Davis! I picked out a pumpkin already!”
Samantha smiled. Fred took her hand, and pulled her toward his prize pumpkin, chattering about carving it, toasted pumpkin seeds, and picking out his Halloween costume.
She kept glancing at Fred. He was a godsend. All the kids were.
Fred’s small, excited voice drowned out the others. But, Samantha knew, with dread, the others, the scary ones, would return.
This concludes the September writing prompts!
I have decided to continue this series into October! Come back next Friday for another prompt post!
If you do decide to participate, please link back to this post. Thanks!
Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂