Monday, May 14, 2012

playground playtime

So this month's NaBloPoMo is all about play. I know I haven't been in the most playful mood in the past few months. Honestly, sometimes it takes a lot of effort for me to leave the house with G. Playgrounds aren't exactly stress free places for me. I had to stop going to G's Tuesday morning Gymboree because a mother there brought in her newborn named August. Sigh.

I find a lot of pleasure in getting G out and about, however. He just loves exploring new areas and being allowed to run off on his own. The more I force myself to take G places, the easier it gets to let go and let him be a toddler.

I hate this hat, but he has to wear it when we're out in sunny weather for a lengthy period of time, doctor's orders. We're doing all that we can for the next three months to help that scar on his eyelid heal.

Now, we all remember G's first emergency room visit. Aka, a moment of slide-induced mommy guilt that lasts forever. G ended up fine, but I haven't been able to look at a slide the same way since. I haven't even been able to even encourage G to go down a slide on his own, even though I know that's much safer than me going down with him.

But I've been trying to take a step back and not hover so much. I know my hovering is anxiety-based. I know it's because of the miscarriage and I don't want that to have any lasting effect on my behavior toward G. I feel like I'm only allowed so much freak out about it before it all gets ridiculous. I mean, do I really need to bring up my middle-of-the-night breakdown the week after my D&C when I thought G had stopped breathing? Yeah, let's not let that embarrassment happen again.

So I put on my big girl pants and decided to give G a bit of a nudge to go down what looked like a large, wide, and fairly calm slide at a park in my Alabaman hometown.

I can tell you, and I'm not proud of it, that I broke out into a sweat. What if he pitched forward and slammed his face onto the slide? What if he broke his neck? What if he broke a leg because his foot got stuck? What if he freaked out halfway down? Oh yeah, my anxiety was at a high.

But you know, the babe got it. He knew what he was doing. He sat down, pushed himself off the edge, and slid and scooted his way down that slide.

I was so proud of my toddler-babe. He had pretty much ignored slides until that moment, but with this slide, he was all about it. After he went down once, he was in love. I think he probably went down twenty more times before we called it a day. It was 85 degrees and muggy in deep South Alabama, and G's cheeks were bright red from the heat.

I know I need to back off more when it comes to G on playgrounds. I'm still his spotter, there to catch him if he falls and prevent any major spills. But I want him to gain confidence in his own skills, and for him to do that, I gotta hang up my mama hat sometimes.

And keep my anxiety to myself.

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