Monday, April 2, 2012

Free Range Baby

Warning:  Do not read if you are thinking of starting a family - This is not an advertisement to become a parent.  It is on the other hand, the reality everyone will face at some point. 

Holy Cow Moment ?:  Raising children is hard.  Raising a child can try your last nerve.  Raising a child is an adventure and for most the most wonderful and educational time in their lives.  Frankly raising a child is not for the weak or faint of heart.  Raising a child will show you your straights, your weaknesses, if you are mentally fit (although usually that is a good thing to know before procreating.)  So based on the fact that children can be a lot to deal with don't we all just need a break sometimes?  Some parental approaches to parenthood differ from my own and that of people I know, and although I can't say they are wrong they are not very public friendly one version is:

The Free Range baby

What is a Free Range baby you ask?  It’s the child running wild in the store or screaming down an aisle and then sliding into your ankle like your home plate and he just won the game.  (Thank you little boy for showing me my bones are not as brittle as I thought – although I still bruise easily glad I know this.)  Actually this is just a child in general.  what makes this a "free range" incident is that the parent clearly did not care and made no attempt to stop said child.  In fact when the child hit me and i said "Ouch" and almost dropped my own baby the parent gave me the dirty look as if i should have predicted her child’s appalling choices and moved, Sorry mom of the year my crystal ball is broken at the moment.

I understand you can't watch everything your child is doing at every second, kids move fast and they get away; we get it.  But if for some reason your child is not embracing  the rules of common courtesy then attempt to lead by example.  I get it, my little one loves to pet strangers - I do not understand why and I seriously feel awful when I miss her rouge hand.  I hope that soon she will learn about personal space, perhaps maybe she will learn about personal space when she is old enough to understand about an indoor voice. 

I hope I have not offended anyone but I really do want to know what goes through the Free Range parents head.  Why do you think it is ok to allow your child/ren to run free in a store interrupting everyone else?  Why do you think it is ok for them to toss out every ball in the ball bin and then not have to put them away?  I see the parents who had their child escape, track down their darling and reprimand them – Good for you by the way. 

Holy Cow does it annoy me more now that I have a child to see someone simply not care what or where their kids have gone.  One issue I worry about is safety.  If you child falls and hurts themselves – NEW FLASH you don’t have the right to sue simply because you can’t or don’t want to parent.  Every child has a bad day, every parent has a worse day and those parents are easy to spot.  Ignore the onlookers who are judging you because your child is screaming because he or she is safely in a cart under your watch, the parents and those with common sense feel for you and respect your choice.

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