One of the things, as a parent and an aunt who helps with her siblings kids, is taking kids to school. I’ve always been taught to question all things. I’ve also learned to let people know when they might be setting a bad example, like parking in the fire lane.
I don’t like to get into arguments or drama, but some people make things too personal. For example:
The elementary school that my nieces and nephew go to (and same one that my son went to), I take the kids to school. The school they go to has a few parking spots on the one side of the building, but 2 of them in particular are labeled as the fire lane, and no parking.
The parents at the school have taken it under their own rules that they can park in that spot. Now, I get it, parents have to drop off and pick up their children, BUT the fire lane is required by law to remain free for emergency vehicles to be able to get as close as possible to the building to get to the problem… whether it’s a fire or someone with a serious injury, or even a kid with asthma that just won’t go away and the episode is getting worse.
Fire lanes are not for parents to sit in for up to 5 minutes, for picking up or dropping off. This includes handicapped individuals. In this case, the school does have some handicapped parking spots, but they are few and not quite where they should be. Believe me, I’d be on the petition to get a spot on the one side of the building if it could be done.
Through this past semester, I’ve told some of the other pre-K parents that there was no parking in the Fire Lane. The response was to brush me off or give me a nasty glance. I get it, you want to get to your kid, but in the case, and I would hope it would never happen, that some other kid is bleeding to death, and your vehicle is in the way… don’t be surprised that the car is pushed out of the way. Every second in an emergency situation is vital.
So, as I’m writing this, I have to put the full story together…
So, the incident that sparked this post, was that I encountered a parent that had a handicapped kid and I only made a glance at their car and shook my head. The parent decided to verbally attack me, so I replied back to let them know the importance of keeping the fire lane open.
The parent told me that the principal said that they could park in the fire lane (keyword… “fire lane”) and I looked at them disbelievingly. In no way the principal would’ve said that. They know that it has to remain open. It’s not acceptable in any reality to make up the rule that it is completely okay to park in the fire lane. It is the same as someone parking in the handicapped spot, just to go into a store for 5 to 10 minutes. For years, my grandmother had extreme incontinence and the closer you could park her car to the store front, the less likely she’d have to go in her adult underwear. That’s another thing I’m passionate about.
However, the parent decided to take it personally after I posted to the city’s Facebook Page, and then go in the next day to talk with the school’s principal. In fact, by the time I got there, the principal already knew about it.
The post has since been taken down because of drama. A different parent commented, not knowing the full situation, only 1 part… thinking I targeted one parent specifically, when it’s never been just one parent. As I said earlier, I have said this to several parents.
The lady who decided to post about me, and even used my legal name (probably to feel important and probably believing that I’m not transparent about my legal name… come on, I speak at conferences across the United States… I have to be – duh!) took it upon themselves to do some light researching on me and post a few untruths. There was a disturbing non-fact that I can’t decide if it was something heard through the grapevine or someone I know, but it was creepy enough that I don’t want to talk about it here.
I’m not a negative person, but there are specific things that I think are important, and sometimes when I point it out, I can be blunt. But I don’t complain every day, nor am I a bitter person. I enjoy my days and what I do. I donate a lot of my hours helping people, sometimes way too much.
Now, in this situation, I get it – they don’t know me. I don’t know them. In the 2 months of this school semester, I’ve been in line about 5 times, and I’m usually last. I think I was one of the first to arrive… one time. Honestly, I like to be last because I don’t want to have to look at people parked in the fire lane. Could I ignore it? No… this is important. My dad has been in the medical field since I was a baby, and I’ve witnessed quite a few incidents that first responders couldn’t get to the injured person in time. I don’t want to witness it again. Even though the school that my nieces and nephew go to is small, it still doesn’t give an excuse for ANYONE to block the fire lane for ANY amount of time. For anyone to argue that, no matter if your kid is physically or mentally disabled. Rationalizing that an emergency would never occur, or that the ambulance or fire truck would never have a problem getting in on time to do what needs to be done, is just delusional. (If you’re an oracle or seer… well then, by golly, we’re lucky for your predictions.)
Honestly, I’d hope no parent or kids would ever experience seeing a child or staff member die at a school. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.
I’m extremely disappointed in the response I received. I’m more than certain that if I tried talking to the parent, they’d still argue that they are in the right. It would be if I had only pointed this out to 1 parent, but this wasn’t the case.
That’s okay, I know the truth, and so do others.
In summary, what I ask, is to have more thought about the bigger picture, and more courteous to leave that area called the fire lane open, so we never have to face a serious and fatal emergency.