Helicopter Moms and Backseat Drivers
Confession: I started out as a helicopter mom.
Wait, I still am one.
Strike all of that. I am a recovering / still kinda-sorta helicopter mom.
Allow me to explain…
This will shock most of you. But, my three year old (youngest of my two girls) has never been to Publix…
I know. Pick your jaw up off the floor. It’s insane. I get it.
Well, she went for the first time two weeks ago…and things did NOT go well.
And, let me just say, I really began to think that maybe I was correct in keeping her tucked away at home, shielded from all of the dangers of the world in that moment.
Ok, ok, ok. Here’s what happened.
We only had 5 minutes to grab three items. You know the drill…whip ’em out of those car seats and dart in and out of the grocery store faster than the Flash…
Except for when that doesn’t work out.
We get inside and I get a buggy. Kids say: “NO BUGGY, MOMMY!”
They wanna walk like big girls (imagine an eyeroll emoji here)… This would end up being our demise, people!!!
So, my little ones start meandering alongside me. As we head down an empty aisle, my youngest decides to bolt for it.
She got up to top speed, turned her head to look at something on the shelves and NAILED that silly buggy I grabbed (FOR THREE ITEMS…I mean if only I could’ve just ditched that thing) and blood started gushing everywhere.
We’re talking crime scene blood.
I mean, paramedics should be required in the future to study this case.
We’re talking NEED LOTS OF MOPS ON AISLE SEVEN, PEOPLE!!
Ironically, we were on the paper towel aisle, and I couldn’t even grab one because I had to get this kid outta there and to the hospital.
Instead of doing the smart thing and dabbing her with a paper towel to assess the bleeding, I buried her head in my chest and bolted for the door.
After the three minute drive to our house, a soak in the tub, more hydrogen peroxide than is probably pediatrician approved, a bandaid or two and gobs of TLC, my baby returned to normal.
Heck. We ALL survived.
And this crazy story led me to several epiphanies. But only one that I’m sharing today:
Being a helicopter mom doesn’t always pay off…
In fact, it’s like being a backseat driver. Those folks mean well, I’m sure. But, doesn’t it really just annoy the driver? Like, to the point that they just want to slam their foot on the gas pedal and drive off an embankment somewhere?
Well, I think that’s what my little one may have been trying to subconsciously tell me that day.
All those years of stowing her away like Rapunzel were silly.
All those incessant talks about how to walk in a grocery store, where to walk, when to walk, what to do while walking were all in vain until I let her experience it on her own.
As Mommas, it is so tempting to wrap our babies in bubble wrap and play with them like fragile little dolls.
But just like a back seat driver, we are really just exerting that extra ounce of control that we are so desperately clinging on to…
Ouch. I said it.
That’s me to a tee.
This “Let Go and Let God” thing is coming slowly for me when it comes to my kids…anyone else?
I’m not suggesting that we throw our kids in the street and wait to see what happens.
But, I am suggesting that after we’ve given them instruction, let’s do our best to stand back and let them be.
They are going to make mistakes.
They may even run into buggies going 100 miles per hour, nail their forehead and gush blood everywhere.
But, that’s all a part of learning.
And for us, too…
Do you have an epic helicopter mom moment? Please share in the comments!
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