-we ate raw eggs in our cookie batter all the time, and never got sick (we also ate play dough)
-we rode our bikes all over the place without helmets and in cars without seat belts
-summer vacation really meant time off, just free open days with lots of swimming and playing outside
-the most organized after school activity was gathering to play baseball in the local field
-my mom stayed home until I was a teenager, as did all the neighborhood moms.
That was only 30 years ago but it seems a far cry from the world today. Some of the things we did probably could have resulted in serious injury, but we were allowed the freedom to explore and learn. My children inhabit a very different world where we are scared of everything and afraid almost to venture out our front door. I am trying as a mom to let my children experience nature, explore, climb and enjoy our world, but it is hard. The draw of electronic devices is very strong and I find myself frequently relenting as the kids would rather stare at a screen then go outside, where the world is not as welcoming to children as it was when I was a kid. I am not sure what the answer is, but I will try to leave a large margin to our days, so we are not running from one activity to another. I have friends who, from the time their kids get out of school, until after 9pm, they are running to lessons, practice, ect. These kids wind up exhausted and sleep deprived. I am under a lot of pressure from other families to do the same, give the children all that is offered, but I have to say “No”, and hold up. Big stop sign! My kids are grateful too, as they have time to just “be”.
What are your thoughts? How to do find balance in a world that pulls us in many directions?