I belong to a parenting group on an NZ website - I joined it when I was about 3 months pregnant with Tyler, and hooked in with a group of women who were all due in the same month as me. It was great sharing the details of our pregnancies, finding out that you weren't the only one having xyz symptom or worried about abc. Now I hang out on the 'Over 5's' board and the OT (Off Topic) board.
I recently posted a topic I entitled 'Everything's Dangerous!' about how now that I have a child, I see the world through the How-Is-That-Going-To-Hurt-My-Child lens. At times my imagination leaps ahead of me and whirls through a scenario of fall! blood! broken bones! screams! ambulance!....you get the idea. It was comforting to find out how many Mums do the same, and we swapped ideas on how to keep our kids safe, while allowing them to learn how to handle danger and not turn ourselves into Helicopter parents.
The irony of it all which will not have been lost on you, gentle readers, is that at age 7, T-man has had three broken bones already. None of which occurred in what I would call dangerous circumstances. Just normal everyday, boy activities. (I recall when the hospital had to remove his cast early on his first broken arm, the doctor said that it was healing nicely but to not let him jump around for the next couple of weeks. Hello? He was what - 3 years old at the time? It's what 3 year olds do.)
This evening we went for a wander down to the local park which has a nice BMX track on it. Tyler has ridden there a number of times recently, including starting from the top hillock. He did one circuit happily, waited his turn and then set off on the second circuit. Somewhere between the second and third little hillocks something went awry and he crashed off. Not heavily but awkwardly, incurring a number of scrapes and bruises including a graze and bruise on his behind which should look satisfactorily colourful tomorrow morning. There were tears. And snot of course. We hugged. We encouraged him to get back on the bike and ride around again. He wasn't having a bar of it. It took a while and lots of encouragement but we finally got him back on, although not on the circuit, but he biked all the way home.
There will be more falls, more bruises and scrapes, maybe even another broken bone. But they will heal and he will learn. What's that? Not long before he's a teenager in a fast car? ......la la la la I can't hear you!