Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Split Decisions

When it comes to the kids, the 'Fo and I share most of the decision making process, with obvious pole position going to whoever is directly in the situation. And yes, given the opportunity my 'Fo would indeed be whipping the rotors around, ie Helicopter parenting, overseeing most if not all of the activities and decisions our kids make in order to keep them safe. In his wisdom however, he generally bows to my superior knowledge of childrearing, ie I pushed em out, I get bonus voting cred when it comes to certain issues. I tend to be a bit more relaxed, give more of a free reign, allowing them to make mistakes, hopefully learn something from it and knowing better next time.

Ultimately they are all fairly clever in their own ways, but also gloriously idiotic at times.

Take this weekend. Two of the kids had friends over on Saturday after rugby. The friends also happened to be brother and sister, so worked out nicely - took them both home in the happy wagon with me after the game, only one pickup scheduled for later. Shipped one of mine off around the corner to her friends house. Lovely. Only the 3 year old left requiring a bit of an eye.

Now, as I said, I'm all for exploration, testing boundaries and trying new things. Turns out the adventure of the day was climbing on the shed outside. My son does this all the time to retrieve his misplaced tennis/rugby/soccer/softballs. From what I've seen it's a jimmy up on the fence, up on the garden shed, around the edges to scale up to the garage roof when need be. Never been an issue. He's always been fairly good with his physical abilities and sense of self, so I've never really had reason to worry.

Apparently not all kids have built in catlike senses as he does. Or maybe they spook a bit easier. I wandered outside to hang the washing on the line, mid-climb. My boy nodded hello as I walked past, his mate freaked. He's obviously not got approval for shed climbing in his home and thought I was about to lose the plot. Whereby he lost the plot for me. I saw in slow motion as he went for a hasty retreat and decided to step back right across the middle of the shed roof. The tin shed. Roof held up by one thin bracket, which I later discovered wasn't even a full length bracket and had a join in it a few inches from the end from whence he stepped.

At this point the fun level went skyhigh. I'm sure I had an internal chuckle somewhere anyway. The kid stepped, the roof buckled, the bracing snapped at the join. Shed shifted due to uneven load, roof panel bent way down to the point of no return. Thankfully ounce of wisdom prevailed and the kid hoisted his weight back onto the foot still on the wall panel that had a bit more support left and then froze.

My boy darts around the edge and jumps off within a millisecond. Fresh meat stands there looking at me, grip of terror on the garage roof edge. Torn between thoughts of broken shed, ruined storage space and impending rain forecast for the evening, mixed with feelings of how to deal with the parents of this kid should he come to an injury of some kind, I figured the cost factor of an injury related law suit may be higher than the ruined storage items and guided him off. Instability meant the easiest passage was to jump over the neighbours fence, then climb back over it down past the shed.

Kid got bitten on the finger by the neighbours yappy dog while he was over there. Poetic justice in my mind. Actually did have an outloud chuckle at that one. Cruel I know, but the kid just trashed our shed.

There was an unspoken understanding at that point between me and Freshie. I was not gonna lose it, nor would I say anything to his folks, nor was he top of the invite list.

Eyeball agreement.

And I set to work rehoming the Christmas and Halloween decorations.

1 comment:

  1. Love that unspoken understanding at the end. You really have a way of describing scenes. It's fun to read.