Tuesday, March 16, 2010

On His Own

This week I've started watching my niece again (she's around 18 months now--which is fun since she's started communicating and is able to do more things since she was with us last). As I was putting her and Nils down for naps/rest time this afternoon, I got a text from Anders' classmate's mom. She was wondering if he could come over and play with her son. They only live around the corner and down the street. But that street doesn't have cross-streets, so it's probably 2 to 3 blocks from us. Small blocks, mind you, but the point is they're not just right next door.

I wasn't going to wake my niece up and get everyone dressed up to go for a walk. So I let my 5-year old walk their by himself. To be fair, I went with him out of the apartment and down to the corner where he had to cross over (I wasn't out of the apartment for more than 2 minutes). I reminded him of the things he needs to be mindful of while walking down the road (and to have good manners while he is there). Then I watched him go off.

I've been realizing that I can either be overly protective of my children or I can go to the other extreme of being to lax in their boundaries. I probably end up being too lax at times if anything. But for the most part, I strive to be in the middle. I hope to give my children freedom--to explore, to succeed, to fail, to learn, to have fun--while letting them know the boundaries and expectations they need to work within. I try to give them responsibility rather than free-reign. So, while it's a little scary letting him walk down the road for the first time by himself, I know I can trust him.

His friend's mom texted me back by the time I was back inside the apartment to let me know he had arrived there. Whew.


  1. Yay! You're raising a Free Range Kid! http://freerangekids.wordpress.com/

  2. Yeah, I'm not sure I'll be letting Anders go there again. I'm not happy with some of the things Anders said went on. That's the down side. I can trust my kids--but not everyone else's kids are raised the same way.