This morning started like most other- getting three children ready for the day, drop Popples at nursery, wrestle Oliver in the car and drop Max off at placement. All done on time- even arrived early for school and was looking forward to Foundation Stage’s production of Jack and the Beanstalk. We’ve had to grow beans at home and keep a bean diary, and there’s been lots of work done in school with the story being at the focus. Oliver was part of the beanstalk and had to wave a leaf at the appropriate time. It was going to be interesting at any rate.
So we pulled up at school and was just finishing listening to Room on the Broom before getting out. Now I know my son is a runner and a flight risk, we had a near miss just outside the house a couple of months ago where I let go of him to put the key in the door and he ran down the neighbours path into the road. I shouted and ran after him and got to him a second before the car did. A couple of weeks ago he got past the teacher on the door in the morning and ran off to the Bug Hotel/outside readers corner. Fortunately he went down that path and not the one next to it as it would have been onto the road. Therefore I am super vigilant and hold onto him all the time when he is mobile. Today I had him by the wrist as it was hot and he is sweaty and I didn’t want to lose my grip on him. Five steps from the gate he managed somehow to get loose and was on the road in front of a range rover who fortunately wasn’t driving too fast and I had reached him and snatched him out of the way. He is so fast and seems hellbent on escaping and running into dangerous situations that he has no comprehension of.
Teddy’s gran saw the whole thing, she said he was fast and I did nothing wrong but its hard to feel that way when I know him and he’s in my charge. School made me a cup of tea and had a chat about his Houdini type antics. I watched some of the play and he was happy as anything waving his leaf. I think Teddy’s gran got upset too, she used to work with kids like Oliver and it’s never nice to see a near accident. I use reins everywhere else but never needed them to get from the car to school. Well that’s what you think until this happens and you think “I knew what he was like why did I not do it as a precautionary measure?” When I went to collect him after another day of “what if’s” and sweet tea I took his reins and put them on. Whilst walking with him out of the gates he managed to get the shoulder straps off. So I did my research and have ordered him some super strength reins designed for children like Oliver. They weren’t cheap- nothing is when you put special needs in front of it, but they may save our lives. Teddy’s mum said this afternoon “I bet you can never relax, always waiting to run ” and I am. I have seen Oliver watching where I put my keys, watching which key I put in the door and I know he is waiting for his chance.
I’ve tried talking about cars and squashing. Used simple language, told him NO. Nothing works, he doesn’t understand danger, he has no clue as to the seriousness of consequences, he thinks mum shouting “no” and him having a time out is worth it to “catch” a car. I need to be more vigilant, and I need to stop being lulled into a false sense of security. Lets hope these reins help- at that price they had better be good!