As a nationally-acclaimed worry-wort (*disclaimer: no one has ever given me anything but grief, let alone acclaim for my vigilant worrying) a few weeks ago I did something that I’ve been feeling kind of proud of.
That’s me (not pictured) boldly allowing my baby to ride her bike to school clear across suburbia all by herself without any bubble wrap.
And here I am not pictured again, sending my 4th grader out to meet the school bus alone with little more than a smile and that pack on her back.
I am brave. I am chill and relaxed and so comfortably assured that my children are prepared for their world that I can barely think of anything to worry about. List? Consider yourself checked.
And oh yes stranger danger and helmets and looking two ways and holding on with both hands we’ve covered you too. We are good.
And then, an email. An email from school that came with this title:
Bear Activity confirmed in school district.
Aces. So much for all that time I dedicated to compulsive preparations because I can tell you this with utter confidence — I sent those little lambs out into their environment without a single item that might be useful in self-defense against wild animals.
Unless you count a sharpened #2?
I turn my jittery, flustered attention back to the email and find, not a step-by-step on defeating bears with writing implements, but this helpful tip:
“Please talk to your children about bear safety.”
Um, right-o. I am sure that tying trash in trees and stomping out campfires works just fine when these not-so-gentle giants are encountered in their woodsy ‘hood, but what could bear safety in the suburbs possibly look like?
I can only assume that it’s a little bit Never accept candy from trench-coat-adorned bears.
And perhaps a smattering of Just Say No, er, to bears.