My kids tend to wander. And by “wander”, I mean show no direction or drive to do any task. I’m amazed they have survived as long as they have as much as they don’t pay attention to their surroundings. They walk into objects, trip, and bounce off people all day long. Somehow, in public this just gets worse. I often refer to taking them out in public as “herding cats” but it’s more like “herding a bunch of stoners” through malls and stores. This is why I HATE taking them to the library.
Why, the library as opposed to anywhere else? Well, the library has shelving that is perfect for a little one to wander into and be completely out of site. Charlie once ran away from me and although I did a pretty good job nabbing him before he got too far, there was a split second I couldn’t see him. Scary for a mom of a 2 year old that doesn’t talk. Now he’s 4, and although he talks, I’m not sure how well he would do in a “lost” type of situation. I don’t think he would find someone to help him. He doesn’t do that at home, he just sits where he is and yells for things. I imagine he would do that lost in a store as well.
Molly is a different story. I always assume advice that I’m giving her falls on deaf ears. There is usually little response and the response I get is often a non sequitur to what we’ve been talking about. She did however call 911 and give the lady all the information she was supposed to once. We didn’t need 911 to be called, but that’s a story for another day. It at least tells me that something is getting in. It wasn’t that long ago that Stampy and I were trying to brain storm the best way to talk to Molly about finding help. Who she should talk to or where she should go in the case that she has wandered off or we’ve been separated. Should she stay put or find a grown up to help her? Is there a right answer? Will she even remember what we tell her if she ever is lost? Who knows?
As with most parenting struggles, it’s always good to know you aren’t alone. So, when author, Louie Lawent reached out and asked me to read Momma Don’t You Worry, I was happy to. I found reading this with Molly was a great starting off point for our conversation of “what to do when you get lost”. The book has a catchy tune and Molly was even able to read it herself which allows for her to take interest in the lesson of the story. The story is about a 6 year old boy that wanders off to play with trains and ends up not being able to find his way back, but remembers what his mom has told him to do. Molly identifies with the main character which is helpful when we head out in public and her need to parrot what she hears and reads means that she repeats the catchy rhymes as we head into stores. I have a feeling this is a book that we will be revisiting as Charlie heads into kindergarten and thinks he is too cool to hold my hand as well.
I recommend this book for anyone that needs a good starting off point for talking to your kids about getting lost in public. The author was generous enough to supply me with my copy, but you can find your ebook on Amazon.