Friday, April 09, 2010
The photo is of Dinoguy at 17 months when I took him to Disneyworld while Fixitman had a conference in Orlando. He's wearing his harness that I used whenever we were in public from the first time he ran off and hid at 13 months until he was about 3 and I could reason with him that he could not run away from me and hide in public places. (But I kept it in my purse for just in case use until he was probably 5.) I did not want to buy it initially but we could not come up with another solution, especially when he was 13-14 months old. If I did not use it, he got lost. I stopped going to Wal-mart because I lost him there twice and they were so slow in reacting and helping search for him both times that I decided I couldn't go there with my kid.
When your child wears a harness/leash in public, there are 2 visible reactions. The parents who have been there and have had children who needed leashes smile sympathetically. They sometimes point it out to their children and tell them "You used to have one of those". The other reaction is disgust from those who believe I am harming my child or treating them inappropriately.
If you have never had a runner, a child who for some reason just takes off at full speed and either just keeps running or finds a hiding spot, you probably fall into the disgust category. And I would probably be one of those people if I hadn't had Dinoguy. Trainboy and Munchkin are not runners. Trainboy is a dawdler, who studies things and moves slowly. If I lose track of him, it is because I am moving too quickly and not holding his hand. Munchkin is afraid of other people still and holds onto my leg if put down in public. Dinoguy never had stranger anxiety. He has always gone easily to anyone and will talk to anyone.Which triples my fear when he's lost because someone could take his hand and ask him a few questions and he'd walk away easily with them. I tried instilling a fear of strangers in him. It didn't work.
Fixitman said he was making a new harness when we got home and Dinoguy actually said he wanted one. He just has a hard time staying with us because he has to go see everything in new places. I don't think he actually needs one, since he was hiding more because he was upset with me than just for fun this time. It is tempting though.