03 August 2011

Of Stranger Danger

I had an inkling this morning while preparing breakfast for the little ones (read: putting Apple Jacks and bananas on their respective high chair trays and filling their sippies with milk - I'm so gourmet it kills you, doesn't it?) that I should take a moment or two to try to explain the concept of "danger" to our rambunctious near-three-year-old. Not wanting to complicate breakfast, however, I shrugged off the feeling.

Not ten minutes later, our doorbell was ringing with a shadow behind the glass taller than any typical visitor to our stoop (especially being that our only "typical" visitor is my rather small sister-in-law).  Not being appropriately dressed for strangers at this time of the morning, I panicked - I knew Sesame Street was probably a little too loud to pretend no one was home, but I also wasn't sure I wanted to even try opening the door - I always panic at the thought of a stranger at the door - dressed or not.  When what to my wondering ears should I hear but my daughter, yelling, "Is it Dia?!  Mommy, who is it?!"  I tried to quietly urge her to shut her trap (ok, I really was nicer, but still firm), but she did not seem to get the hint, continuing in her obnoxiously loud voice, "Mommy, who is it?!".  Knowing I definitely could not pass off the "we're not home" theory, I dashed to the bedroom for a robe, only to hear more yelling from the living room, "Come in!"  I could have died - and taken a certain little girl with me.

Of course, by the time I returned to the front door, the tall, shadowy stranger had disappeared and I would later learn it was someone sent by the electric company to trim trees in our backyard.  But none of that mattered.  What made me whirl around with the glare of death toward my toddler was the fact that she did not listen to me and, in fact, did the exact opposite of what I had requested in a moment that could have been dangerous.

Thus, I decided maybe this morning would be the perfect time to discuss strangers and the danger they can pose.  I'm praying there was not a reason coming in the near future that necessitated that lesson being taught today.

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