My obsession with safety began with the crash tested infant carrier that I brought to the hospital for the ride home. Driving 20 mph home, I was so careful with my precious cargo. As a mother I have spent my days protecting my son from harm. And, in time I developed a safety radar and I could prevent most of the accidents. But, what I can’t see are the accidents that come from behind.
Sitting at a red light last night with my son in the car, I was struck from behind by another car that didn’t stop. Because I was focused on the car in front of me, I didn’t see him coming. I guess it’s time to admit I don’t have eyes in the back of my head. As much as I would like to control my son’s whole world, sometimes I just get hit from behind.
As a Mom, I have worried about my son’s safety from the day that he was born. And, when he was 4 years old and able to understand, I introduced him to a Police Officer in the Mall. I told him that if he were lost or needed help that he could ask the Police Officer for help. The Police Officer commended me for telling my son that he was here to help and teaching him safety practices.
Patting myself on the back, I continued my errands with my son. “If you behave and let Mommy finish her errands, you can go to the Disney Store,” I told him. He nodded agreement and smiled. But, half way through my errands, he took off running through the Mall to find a place to hide from me, screaming “Hide and Seek!” Laughing as he darted away from me, he practiced evasive maneuvers rivaling NFL players.
When I finally caught him, I decided to leave the Mall and go home for his safety. Holding onto the back of his shirt, so that he could not run away again, I started walking him towards the exit. As we passed the Disney Store, he fought my grip to escape and go into the store. With my super Mommy powers, I kept hold of him tightly and he was not able to break free. Suddenly, he remembered what I taught him and started yelling, “Help! Help! Police Help! She won’t let me go into the Disney Store!” I’m sure that Police Officer had a little chuckle watching the scene in front of the Disney Store. When he didn’t come to my son’s rescue, my son muttered, “where’s a Police Officer when you need him,” and stamped his feet all the way to the exit. Sulking in the back seat all the way home, I don’t think he heard me when I tried to explain that the Police are there to keep him safe. I was not harming him by making him go home without the Disney Store.