Don’t Walk On The Grass

I was talking to my daughter Marie’s mom the other day when she told me they were at Marie’s school. She said they were breaking the rules by walking on the grass. When I heard this I had to laugh. It just made me think of how things have changed since I was a kid.

I remember growing up in a small town in Louisiana. There were no houses within a half mile of me. I had Bayou Grosse Tete in front of my house with soybean fields and woods in back. I stayed outside. I had video games. Nintendo was just replacing Atari and I played them quite a bit. Nothing was better than playing outside. Even when I moved from there to a town that was slightly more populated I still stayed outside. On my bike or playing basketball. I was out till the street lights came on every day.

Another difference is I did all of this unsupervised. No cell phone. I left and told my mom I was going play as I let a door slam and never thought twice about it. If people lost contact with their kids for that long now days they would have an aneurysm. Police would be called and manhunts would be organized. By the time they got home that evening the parents would be filming an episode of “First 48” only 5 hours later.

I’m guilty of this too. My kids are young. Julia just turned seven and Bubby is about to be six. At that age I was in the woods unsupervised with my friends getting into all sorts of adventures. Not my kids. I won’t let them in the front yard alone. Is it really that times are that different or are we just paranoid as parents to a new level? Don’t walk on the grass. I think that sounds absurd to give that rule to a bunch of teenage kids, but I find myself saying don’t to a lot of things. Am I any better than these ruiners of outdoor fun? Am I destroying my kids chances for adventure? I remember saying that I would never tell my kids no like my parents did. What a fool I was. I’m probably worse.

I think when I get off the boat this time I’m going to have a week of breaking the rules. Not all of them of course. I can’t let my kids run wild with no rules because, well, they’re crazy. I just think we need to slack off on certain things and let our kids relax. I think a couple nights of backyard camping with marshmallows and scary stories may be in order. That is until too much fun is being had. Then it’s inside with everyone!


6 thoughts on “Don’t Walk On The Grass

  1. I saw something online one time about having a “Yes Day” for the kids. Parents say yes to whatever the kids want to do that day, within financial limitations, and they do it. Kids want to eat Chuck E Cheese for breakfast, yes. Kids want to have a water balloon fight in the yard, yes. That sort of stuff. It sounded like it turned into a fun day for the kids and the parents!

  2. Its a conversation I have in my head on a daily basis. Where is the line drawn and do we pull the net in tighter because the world is a different place – or has parenting become an expectation with a bar set way too high to have a chance at reaching ? I’m not sure. Personally, if I saw ‘do not walk on the grass’. I would tell them not to – but if they did – I suspect a small smile would esacpe my mouth…….

  3. I talk to my hubbs about this all the time! Sassy is 10 and at her age I was gone all day swimming in the creek behind our neighborhood, riding my bike to the gas station to buy treats, and just being wild lol I would stroke out if she tried any of that! He always tells me I have to let go just a lil more! Lol still thinking about that! Ha

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