Thursday, September 29, 2011

Leaving "The Leash" Behind

A time warp post!

Yesterday, as I walked Austin to school, he ran up a few feet ahead of me.  (He stays on the sidewalk and jogs up to the school doors where he waits for me to come and walk in with him.  I only allow him to do this on our way to school since he is familiar with the area.  He likes to walk on the sidewalk beside me or in front of me because he knows it is "safe".)  As I was walking behind him yesterday, I had a flash enter my mind from the past, "the toddler leash".  My, my, how far Austin has come from those days.

I am not sure if you have seen these little "leashes" or "harnesses" that they have for kids.  I used to have one for Austin.  It looks just like a leash, a opening on one end for me to hold onto and the other end wrapped around Austin's wrist and secured with velcro.  This little device saved Austin so many times I cannot even give you a number ... too many to count!  I used to put it on him when we would go shopping, out for a walk (sometimes) or to car shows.  He would take off running and sometimes right out into the street in front of our house (we were very lucky that there was very little traffic on our dirt road), so it was the only way we could keep him safe.  The looks we got, I cannot even tell you ... sigh ...  Then one day, an older man came up to my husband at our local car show and said that he thought that it was a really smart thing!  Really?  Someone actually understood that we were trying to keep Austin safe.  Even if it was just one person, it was reassuring that someone "got it"!

I do not see these little wrist "leashes" anymore.  They have a new PC version, a harness.  It is carefully disguised as a backpack where the child can walk in front of you and it is not as evident that the child is really attached to the parent, it just looks sort of cute.  Either way, despite what people may think of you, I recommend them for children who wander or run.  Someone asked my opinion a while back about her getting one for her child, who would walk off and run away from her.  I said, "Go buy one!"  I told her about the little backpack harnesses they have now and told her not to care what people thought.  Would she rather have her child safe on a harness or have them run into the street where they could get hit or killed by a car?  Easy answer when it is put to a parent in that way.

I am glad that I took such precautions with Austin years ago and it was at the suggestion of my mother in-law believe it or not.  I was not receptive to the idea at first because I was worried what people would think.  I did not see any other children "attached" to their parents.  The thought of Austin being harmed by not protecting him, changed my mind very quickly.

All the best!  *HUGS* :)


Judy said...

I have seen the newer versions of the leash and have considered getting one for my son, even though he's not a runner just never know when a child's short attention span will be caught by something they like and they just take off trying to get closer.

I remember as a teenager there was this couple at our church who kept their toddler on a leash all throughout church and I honestly judged them for that...but now that I have kids I totally understand!!!

Victoria said...

I'm so glad he is doing better! I agree completely about the "leashes". Who cares what people think if there's a safety issue with your child? You know, Froggy wears bright pink earmuffs (the gun range kind) everywhere we go. We get dirty looks (or the WTF? looks) all the time. My response, on the rare occasions someone comments, is that she's causing less of a scene wearing them than if she were to be out without them. At the end of the day, the leash is the same way. At least if your kid has one on they have the luxury of judging instead of being recruited into a search party or questioned by the cops about whether they saw anything fishy. And they can judge all they want but until they've walked in your shoes they have no idea what they'd do. Don't they think we know how silly our kids look??? lol

I hope you and your wonderful family are having a great week!

Mommie that Gets It said...

Hi Judy!

You are so right. You just never know when they could take off. Better to be safe than sorry.

Isn't it funny how our perspective changes once we have children? Thanks for sharing and commenting! *HUGS* :) Heather

Mommie that Gets It said...

Hi Victoria,

Austin has a pair of yellow "ear muffs" that he wears in class when it is too noisy. Great idea I think!

I think that people just don't see it very much and probably don't know what to make of it. I preferred the looks to taking the chance of Austin being hurt. Having Austin dodge out somewhere was very frightening. We need to keep all our babies safe! Silly or they think we have taken being a "Helicopter Mom" to a whole other level! ;)

Thanks and the same to you Victoria!

Thanks for sharing and the comment!

Hope all is well!

*HUGS* :) Heather


Jaxmom said...

We used one of those "leash" type restraints when we took my then 4 year old nephew to Marine World. Whenever I would take the wrist part off and just hold it in my hand, my nephew would insist that I put it around my wrist rather than hold it. He liked being connected to me and wanted me to wear it just like he was! He's now almost 21, and we don't make him wear the wrist band anymore. ;-)

Debbie K.

Mommie that Gets It said...

Hi Debbie,

Thanks for sharing and understanding. It is so scary when you have no idea what a child will do at any given moment.

:D You made me smile! Thanks again!

*HUGS* :) Heather