There’s a fine line between cautious and over-protective

January 3, 2009 at 11:05 am (Baby, Family, Parenting) (, )

Now that Alexis is mobile and active and daring, I find myself constantly second-guessing my actions.  She has had numerous bumps and falls and accidents already.  I know this is just the beginning!! As a mom, I have a natural instinct to want to protect my child from getting hurt.  When I see her standing and about to fall, I want to steady her and grab her.  But I also know that it’s good for her to fall, it’ll teach her her limitations and she will learn how to fall.  She needs to try things on her own in order to grow and develop.  It’s so tough for me to know when to step in and when not to.  A perfect example, last night she was crawling in her room and tried to stand up on a step stool that is just her size.  It’s not extremely sturdy and I knew that it could tip over if she didn’t put her weight in the middle.  But it’s only about a foot off the ground so I also knew that she wouldn’t fall far if she did and the room is carpeted.  So I let her do it and she fell, of course she bumped her lip and it started bleeding a little.  I felt terrible!!!!!  I shouldn’t have let her do it.  But the tears and the bleeding soon stopped and she was no worse for the wear, so I guess it was ok.

That brings me to my dilemma, when is it cautious and when is it over-protective.  It is with held breath that I watch her let go and stand on her own and even when she wobbles and I want to step in and grab her, I hold back and usually I learn that she can re-gain her balance.  Not always though and sometimes she falls, most of the time on her butt, occasionally not and she will get scared/hurt, but nothing serious.  I can see into the future and having the same issue with allowing her to go out with friends somewhere without me.  I guess the worrying never stops.  My job as a parent from now on is to teach her good judgment and to instill in her the belief that mommy will always be there when she stumbles (literally or figuratively)  and sit back and hope that she can take on all of life’s challenges with me behind her ready to catch her if she falls.

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1 Comment

  1. mellymelb said,

    Follow your instincts, mommy. If your instinct is to protect – don’t second guess yourself because I promise there will be times that you will not get there in time and she will fall before you can reach her.

    You will freak out the first few times until you see that you freaking out causes her to freak out more than if you had just kinda waited to see how she reacts to the fall or tumble. She will bruise her head and face. She will mash her fingers in cabinets – sometimes you will see when its okay to let her and sometimes you will know when to head her off at the pass. It just takes time. You are doing a GREAT job!!!!

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