My daughter forgot her dinner money this morning so I sprinted after her knowing she would not have dawdled far. It wasn’t long before I saw her ahead of me, with her elder brother and his friend, crossing at the pedestrian crossing as they are supposed to and then bimbling up the hill to school.
I struggled to get past a large group of children to reach her and, just as I finally overtook them, she took leave of her brother to set off to call for her friend.
My heart stopped SHE DIDN’T LOOK AS SHE CROSSED THE ROAD.
I talked to her on the pavement, trying not to scream and flap my arms like a mad lady, trying not to upset her too much on her way to school, trying not to cry.
‘You didn’t look…you crossed the road and you didn’t look.’
‘Sorry Mummy isn’t going to help when you’re squished love’
‘You didn’t look behind you AT ALL’
‘I listened Mummy, there was no car’
‘What about bicycles?’
We had a hug and she went on her way to school and I went home, worrying. So, what do I do?
- Stop her walking anywhere on her own ever again?
- Follow behind her at a discreet distance but close enough to yell or leap if she gets it wrong?
- Go through the rules for the umpteenth time and just hope she listens?
- Make her watch one of those horrible films where someone gets hit by a car and flung into the air to land horribly injured or dead?
- Ask school to do a road safety talk?
I have found myself longing for the return of Tufty or The Green Cross Code Man, both of which stuck in my head as a child and ensured that I am a careful crosser even today – just as the International Tidy Man and the Bag It and Bin It campaign mean I never knowingly drop litter and can often be found with a bag full of rubbish waiting for a bin!
I think I may have to start a campaign to bring back Public Information Films.
So what do you think? Do I scare her? Do I calmly state the rules AGAIN? Or do I show her Green Cross Man and Tufty?
All ideas very gratefully received!