Saturday, March 18, 2006

Seatbelts! So we can be safe!

Yesterday morning, while I was already at work at this very desk, J-F and Helena were driving downtown, to work and daycare. Helena taps J-F on the shoulder from the back seat. She waves, "Hallo, Papa!" all smiles. Seconds later she has clambered up into the front passenger seat, so proud that she can unfasten the buckles of her carseat (which she's just about outgrown) and exercise such mobility. J-F is, well, in traffic, busy driving, and all he can do is yell, terrify her into a state of paralysis so that she desists from climbing or squirming. Helena is in tears.

They arrive at daycare, Helena still very much distraught at the nonstop verbal lashing she endured till they reached their destination. Her educatrice inquires as to the problem and upon hearing about the misadventure proceeds also to scold Helena.

The good that comes from this: the morning's activities were scrapped in favour of watching a video on car safety. Helena was asked to do a presentation to the rest of her group, along the lines of "This morning, Papa was very angry at me..."


martha said...

Oh, seat belts. Our children are completely traumatized by memories of the time they each (every one of them tried it) managed to escape their seat belts. These incidents have taken on a mythic, remember the time when...quality. I guess that's a good thing. They sure don't try it any more.

GaelicGrl said...

Poor J-F! That must have been terrifying.

When D turned two, last summer, she saw the Dora "Put on our seatbelts so we can be safe!" part of the cartoon quite frequently. From that point on, if you asked her why she had to put it on, she would tell you it was "to be safe". Still, that doesn't mean that she has any clue about what isn't safe.

Nowadays, she struggles against the belt and oomplains. We dread the day that she will be able to undo it. From the sounds of it, this is pretty close...