Friday, May 9, 2014

It takes a village, and shit.

I'm the taller blonde with the unphotogenic eyes. Do you like the Kaboodle necklace I'm wearing?

Mother’s day is around the corner and I just wanted to pop in here to share some thoughts I've been having about parenting and how hard we are on each other. I can’t help but think that times have changed, and while I don’t REALLY know what it was like to be a parent 30 years ago, it’s undeniable that things are different.

I read an article this morning about a 3 year old boy who walked off and away from his backyard. His mom didn't notice until around 7:30 at night when she realized she didn't hear him playing in the yard. The entire town rallied and ended up finding the kiddo around 2 am. The sweet part of the story was that the family dog kept the kid warm while it rained (of course it rained!) by covering his body in a field. The comments to the article bummed me out though. How did we become such a judgmental society? I'm sure being judgmental is probably not new, but I feel it so strongly and I can't help but notice when I talk to older generations, that parenting was different for them in that aspect. I’m glad her rural town came together (200 people) and looked for the 3 year old ; everyone cared, that’s nice for me to read. I'm used to parents that are quick to blame instead of just caring and wanting to help. What people don’t realize is that this could happen to anyone, it’s happened to me.

TWICE, when Wyatt was around 2 years old, he walked OUT of our apartment and was no where to be found. If you know anything about my kid, he’s basically always in his underwear (he hates wearing clothes, I swear) and so he walked out of the house in only his undies. He would unlock and walk out while I was showering, leaving me running around like a crazy person in just a towel (do you take the few minutes to get dressed or do you immediately go outside and start looking?). He was fine. Of course I’m lucky, but he was okay. These things happen and likely have happened to you, too. Have you ever lost track of your kid? Wyatt (age 2) escaped out of my mother-in-laws house and walked down the end of the cul de sac during a family get-together. The neighbors threatened to call CPS. I was so dumbfounded that their first instinct was to try to get my child taken away from me than to just get him home. It was an honest mistake, we had the front door wide open to let the breeze in but someone didn't shut the screen door. So many people at the party and accidents happen. That was the last time Wyatt ever snuck away. 

When I was a kid, I played outside by myself or with my sisters and didn't come home until dark. My little sisters tagged along behind me, and they must have been 3 and 5 when I was out there alone in the yard. My responsibility was to watch over them, and I did. #Oldersiblingproblems. While I don't remember what my parents were doing, I assume they were doing something like cleaning the house and getting dinner ready. Normal stuff. 

I wish our first reaction to stories about children roaming away from home is that it was an honest mistake. So in honor of Mother's day, let's be the kind of mothers that we would want in our corner. Let’s help each other out, it takes a village and shit. 

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