My eleven-year-old son still lets me walk him to the bus stop every day. At his age, just being seen with Mom is embarrassing. We used to stand there each morning, with him looking at his shoes and trying not to seem connected to me, until one day when there were a lot of icy puddles on the road.
In his new sneakers and clean school clothes, he started sliding around on the ice, slipping now and then. I noticed him peeking at me to see if I was watching, so I put on a big show, worrying that he would fall, covering my eyes, and saying, “Oh, no!”
Since then, he asks me to come along every day, and picks new and more perilous things to ‘scare’ me with every week; walking on a nearby rock wall, then ‘falling’ off, raking his white cloth sneakers through the green staining grass, ‘slipping’ in the loose gravel. It seems to be a way for him to playfully work through some of the hard things about being a kid and being told to be careful all the time. It is a chance for us to have 5 minutes of Special Time every single day, during a time that would otherwise be just two people waiting for the bus.
–a mother from Boalsburg, PA