Thursday, November 12, 2009


Katherine Fleischer Park on Elementary School Field Trip Day can be a treacherous place. All those kids appeared to be doing some sort of math scavenger hunt, running around with tape measures and questionnaires. Thumper followed them around in absolute awe. He went into the little wooden playhouse, and I'm not saying he was pushed necessarily, but he fell off the bottom step of, hmmm, let me see, Google Google Google, ah yes, these stairs. I ran over and scooped him up while two other adults helpfully told me that he fell down. Really? You think so? I laid his head on my shoulder while he made that long, silent, preliminary cry.

You know what turns a laid back, let-him-explore-for-himself kind of dad into a nervous helicopter parent for the rest of the day? Laying a comforting hand on his child's head and having it come away bloody.

It was a small cut, and he was over it in a minute or two, but man, half an hour later when the five-year-old who's been kicked out of three daycares for "aggression issues" decided it was time to "help" Thumper bounce on the rocket, I may have yelled a little louder than was actually appropriate.

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