Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Heavenly or Cruel?

Let's travel back 12 Years. I remember the first time I saw a mother using one of those child leashes. I gasped out loud. She was walking through an airport and yanking on her poor innocent son. I began objecting to a friend, "Can you believe that people treat their children like dogs? That is cruel! I wonder if they keep him tied to a tree in the backyard."

Now, Fast Forward to Present Time. While scrambling through a busy airport during the holiday season this year, trying to keep up with my 1.5-year old, dropping carry-on luggage, and searching for a bathroom to change a dirty diaper, I saw a heavenly sight. I saw a father using a child leash on his son. Amazing how having a toddler can change your outlook! This leash was attached to a backpack instead of the child's wrist (or neck like that old picture in my head!)

Now, I'm not saying that I would use one of them - NOT YET - check with me in another couple of months (laughing at the thought). I'm not quite that brave yet. However, with a toddler who can probably run a sub 5-minute mile in circles around the house on top of my own self-diagnosed ADHD (exaggerating a little here, folks) which causes me to sometimes forget where I am or which project is in the works...who is to say that I don't need about 10 of those leashes.

This, of course, prompted a long discussion among my mommy friends. "We could design leashes encrusted with rhinestones so they don't look so primitive." Are they cruel? Are they not? Would you dare use one and deal with the glares of passersby burning a hole through you?

I will say many times as my dear daughter has tried to zip out the door at Starbucks as soon as it opens - or - screams with glee as she maneuvers through a crowded mall - or - runs amuck through the racks at a clothing store playing hide-n-seek with mommy...I have considered tying her safely to me.Would a leash be the answer?

Uhm, nope, not for me. Can't quite get this picture out of my head...imagine a 'child-walking' service where a person has 6 kids on leashes walking through Central Park. Too funny. Don't forget the poop bags.


Kimberly said...

YOu could always think of it as tethering sort of a back-up rope!

Whitney said...

A friend of a friend has triplets, and when they were about 18 months, she began using the leash (x3) in public much of the time. Any parent would understand, of course: her choice was either to never leave the house alone or to use the leash.

I totally get you that the backpack makes it all the different. Very funny.