Since school will start soon for Cash and I realize it's the first time he's really going to be out of my control and dealing with lots of new people, school pick-ups, etc., I decided we had better do a family home evening lesson on stranger danger. I had thought about it for a while and how I really hated to do it. Cash doesn't yet really know there are bad people in the world. It was breaking my heart just thinking about telling him. Plus he's finally gotten out of his shell enough to say hi to people as we pass - frequently as, "Hi, man!" and then promptly turns to proudly yell to me that he just said hi to that man. I love it. But he doesn't have a lot of fears yet - probably because he's the oldest child and lives a fairly sheltered life. So I was really torn that I didn't want to put ideas in his head to worry him, but I knew it would be important because he just doesn't know. I can't even get him to pretend something that's not true to his brothers - like when they're going to take a nap and he's saying how he's going to stay awake and I try to get him to not say that to them and act like it's naptime - he's totally bewildered because he doesn't even understand lying.
So we had our stranger danger lesson. And the poor kid was in tears by the end.
We went over the idea of strangers after looking at pictures of family and friends and then random people - mostly celebrities from trash magazines since that's all I had (although, shoot, I'd probably get into a car if David Beckham was motioning to me....) Anyway, then we started talking about different scenarios. I mean, I know it was necessary because during the first few we would have a stranger asking him to come over to his car to help him with something he was like, "Sure!" So then we did some scenarios where he and I would be walking into a store and Ryan, playing a stranger, would motion to him and then try to lead him away by the hand. It was upsetting to him. But I wanted to get one more point across that if someone took him away he should yell as loud as he could, so we did it again and Ryan tried to carry him off and Cash was just bawling and bawling about how he didn't want people to take him away from us and he didn't want to lose mommy, and on and on. It was so sad! I know it was good that he got the point, but man, why does the world have to be the way it is?? Why can't my poor little boy just go on being innocent? I think we were all a little traumatized by it.
Anyhow, in other news, today was the first of a long 5 days without Ryan while he is at a conference in Dallas. It involved me trying to do more outings than normal with the kids, a bevy of meltdowns by everyone, including me, and having to take all my kids late at night to the church with me that resulted in both a pee accident and a diarrhea accident that I had to clean up at the church. Man is it going to be a long week or what.