Tuesday, 6 January 2009

A Milestone

Am i cold or what? Toes curled into each other as i type. And this is a warm house generally. I suppose its drafts and that.

A milestone in my 10 year old's life. He wants to walk to school on his own. Aside from the fact that although he's year 5 now, he 's a little too young, we also live some way from the school (that's a church place for you). But he's determined. So as a compromise, I dropped him off half-way this morning and he walked the rest of the distance. I sneakily drove by him and he looked so young and vunerable walking along swinging his PE bag and lunchbox. Anorack half-off, rugby gloves and Chelsea hat precariously in the balance. It almost broke my heart as well as being frightened for him.

Yet it was an irrational fear really. Its a busy high street, the road full of kids walking to school on their own, there were no spooky country lanes or dark woods. My Mum commented on what a shame it was you had to be so frightened these days. She says this because SHE sent me to school on my own when i was in year One. But in fairness nearly all the kids did then. And you went to the nearest school, none of this "what's a good school ?" nonsense.

And there was more spooky alleyways to go through and Myra Hindley had just been put away. So people were reeling from this dreadful shock that a woman could do such a thing. There really should have been just as much paranoia as today but somehow there wasn't.

Have insisted on picking him up from school still but it'll come to it he'll want to walk home too. Sigh!


Henry the Dog said...

My mum says 'Aahhh bless him'. It must be dead hard having a pup and knowing when to let go and when not to. I know my mum wouldn't let me out on my own, but that's because us dogs have crap roadsense - other than Guide Dogs, and that's after loads of training. I think your little pup will be ok - especially as it's so busy. My mum was like you in that she walked to school on her own from her very first day, but like you it was the nearest. I think it's a shame that there is so much fear these days - most of it is due to the media whipping everything up into a frenzy. I'm sure there isn't a mad axe murderer lurking behind every bush but after reading what's in the papers it sometimes makes you think that there is.

Marie and John said...

When I was at primary school my mam walked me there, but only because she wanted to call off at the bakery every morning for a fresh loaf of bread.

I always walked home by myself and we lived about 20 minutes walk away from the school, with three busy roads to cross and one of them wasn't manned by a lollipop lady.

I think it's the sign of the sad times we live in. I agree with Henry the Dog. There were probably no more child killers or axe murderers around then, but we hear about it more these days.

It's such a shame that children now aren't allowed the enjoyment of playing outside like we used to.


Anonymous said...

It's not easy when we know our babies are growing up and finding their own independence. But society has become such that it would be so difficult not to worry about them. We live in the middle of nowhere and I can't let Amy walk to school (it's 7 miles away) but my husband used to walk across the fields when he was little. Guess the only threat was a flock of sheep.

CJ xx

Elaine said...

God, I feel your fear. I was exactly the same.

It doesn't get any easier, though!

I must admit when my son was that age and wanted to walk on his own, I was more afraid of the traffic, and of him not looking left, right, and left again. I wasn't scared about muggers and rapists and weirdos, just him not paying attention. But once he learned to cross the road properly, I started to worry about all that other stuff. Internet perverts who target teenagers, and drunks and muggers and wankers who target lone boys walking back from the pub on their own.

Tis scary out there. The secret is getting a grip on it and being rational.

I wish I was. x

Suburbia said...

What a milestone. I hate the worry though, I'd have done the same as you. Mind you, in this cold weather, he may not want to do it for long!

Nice Pink by the way!

Anonymous said...

It dies take a bit of getting used to. For me , its less traumatic as one of the benefits of twins is that they walk together. I do feel a bit redundant now tho - although it does mean I can work/study (slob about) in a tracksuit for most of the morning now!

GoneBackSouth said...

Yeah my little boy wants to do that but I've had to put my foot down as our road isn't so safe ... and anyway my daughter (who's 2 years older) still wants me to walk up with her! I'm afraid to say he's given up asking.

Jennysmith said...

Thank you for all your supportive comments. It's interesting that a lot of concern is with road safety. I do think thats a very big worry now. And we don't have a lollipop lady by the school (every other school does!).

They used to tell you never to cross between parked cars but how can you not around here? Or any other city or busy road.

Thats also an interesting point about feeling redundant. Although cushier for me, i feel its the
end of an era

although like you say, the novelty may wear off in this freezing weather

God bless xx

French Fancy said...

As a bit of a worrier it's so good I don't have kids or I'd be a nervous wreck by the time they were three, never mind watching them walk to school by themselves. Are there no other kids he likes walking from nearby (is that poor grammar or what?).

I suppose it's going to be lots of milestones from here on in - get the fags ready, Jen.

Have you swanned around in the silk trousers yet? Oh, I guess it's a bit too cold atm. You'll love them in the summer though.

Polly said...

It so sad that we have to worry so much isn't it. Im frightened even to let my little boy play in the yard without me watching - simply because he has access to the front yard and I never know who might drive past.

Jennysmith said...

Hi FF, to be honest i'm not really worried about wearing the trousers in the cold , more that i haven't got anything to go with them. i did pick up a top at the time but the price tag said "reduced to £350". needless to say, i put it straight back.

Thanks for your comment, Polly, yes, i know - even our own gardens don't feel that safe now. xx

French Fancy said...

that's the worst thing about something new and incredibly lovely -what to wear with it.