Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Perhaps I Won't Turn Out To Be a Helicopter Parent

Yesterday was the first time that I left Emmett in the care of someone who wasn't a family member. Granted, it was my friend Elaine who is Practically Family, but still, it was probably good for me to realize that Emmett and I could survive a short separation. It seems like much of the time, if I go off to do something on my own, Emmett realizes, "Hey wait! The breasts are not in the house! I am panicking! Hear me panic!"

Based on these experiences, I was totally prepared for the possibility that I would walk into the door at Elaine's place (I'd been out to take Lucy to the vet for a yearly checkup) and I'd need to immediately console him with some good old-fashioned breastfeeding. I was pleased and stoked to see him nice and calm instead. In addition to using calming techniques like walking and talking, Elaine's son Van had helped entertain Emmett. Emmett had been mesmerized by a green alien balloon that Van had. (Elaine joked that Emmett might one day remember an alien sighting and it would be based on this balloon experience.) I think he also just enjoyed the company of another boy, of course. Anyway, what a huge relief to have this outing go well. Maybe one day I'll be able to leave him for more than an hour and ten minutes.

Right before we left, I got to see for myself how mesmerized Emmett was by the balloon. Wow. There have been times where I've found Emmett staring at something (who knows what!) but it was the first time that I really noticed him getting fixated visually on something specific. I'll be interested to see what other things capture his attention.

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