The fear of one of my children running into the road terrifies me and actually gives me nightmares. I remember as a child seeing a Mum smack her child quite firmly on the bottom after it had run into the road and being quite upset about the smack, and my Mum saying ‘She did it to scare him and because she was terrified. He will never run in the road again! She may just have saved his life.’ I never got this at the time but I do now.
I have explained to BBthat cars can be dangerous and that they drive on the roads, and I have explained that pavements are for people. We have also started talking about looking both ways when we walk. I have had to be extra vigilant with BBeven though he is under (just) 3 because he has had to walk everywhere from a very young age and so I am reliant on him following instructions and holding my hand whilst I push the double. This is sometimes easier said then done, because we all know what it can be like when a child refuses to hold you hand, except I don’t have the threat of the buggy to put him in!
To scare me even more recently, I had a complete Mummy fail when the twins managed to open the front door and stepped outside. I wasn’t going to tell you this…I was so ashamed I took my eye of the ball I had only popped to the tumble dryer and it just didn’t even cross my mind they could reach the front door handle but I think it is the only way I can reflect to you how easily things can go from safe to terribly dangerous in seconds. It could have had a horrid ending and I would never have forgiven myself. Needless to say the front door is kept locked from the inside now at all times.
My problem with roads and walking is becoming more of a problem now. The twins are twenty months and they don’t want to stay in the push chair all the time. I don’t blame them and it does not seem fair to not let them practice walking, however I just don’t have enough arms to manage it safely. I have invested in two very gorgeous ‘Little Tikes’ backpacks and this has helped amazingly because at least I can have two out at once and I just have to ignore the squabbles and cries of the one that’s turn it is to wait.
Road safety is paramount. This was made even clearer when an accident happened in the local village a couple of weeks ago which resulted in a knock over by a mini bus and a broken leg of five year old. The area is well in need of a lollipop lady, but despite this the message needs to get through to younger children about road safety and awareness.
So, I was really impressed when last week this showed up through my letter box from Essex council. It is a booklet called ‘Preparing me for the road’ and aims at looking at road safety teaching for the under threes. It is an interactive booklet for parent and child and involves lots of steps and activities to help in making your child more aware of the road.
It includes the following topics
- Holding hands
- Things on the road and pavement
I have found the booklet so helpful, and BBand I are working through some of the activities. He now asks to hold my hand because there are cars, but he is so funny because he actually says ‘Mummy, hold my hand, there are cars. It is dangerous.’ as if it is me that needs looking after. My little protector!
I don’t know if all councils are doing these booklets but I hope so. I actually think it is money well spent and really raises the profile of an important issue.
If you want more information on this booklet you can email firstname.lastname@example.org
What do you think?