Thursday, October 10, 2013

D.A.R.E


Excited to tell Larry that I arranged for her to go stay the night at one of her friend's houses, I told her as I was putting her to bed. Now that she is 10 there are times that she is out of my direct line of sight. It is new and still a bit scary for this Helicopter Mama!
 She giggled right along with me as she heard but then said she needed to tell me something about her friend's Dad. My heart stopped beating and I ran through in my mind all the steps that I had taken before blessing off on the slumber party..

Step one: I met her friend's Mother at a neighborhood social event and checked her out from head to toe for signs of "crazy".

Step two: I had met her friend and looked closely at her fingernails and watched to see if she looked at me in the eye when we talked.

Step three: I had her friend come over to play and stay the night here first. Then Larry went there for dinner and then again with Curly to play.

Step four: I went myself to their house to visit with their Mom and meet their Dad.

By now I was pretty much out of steps, especially taking into count that their house is 2 blocks away from ours, the girls are in the same class and by now the Dads had met at a school function.

I tried to keep a calm yet concerned look on my face as not to scare Larry from telling me more. "What is it baby?" I managed through a fake grin.

"My friend's Dad does drugs." she dropped on me.

In the blink of an eye I was suited up in my SWAT attire. My face painted in black as I stormed my neighbor's house. Knocking down the door in one motion I seized the piles of "junk" and cuffed her friend's Dad. He tried to squirm and I back handed him across the face with my fist. "Nobody exposes my kid to something without my prior approval!" I said.. well... it sounded cooler in my head but as I was working out my super hero tag line I flashed back to my daughter who was still standing at the end of the bed, waiting for me to say something.

"Baby have you seen him do drugs?". She nodded.. My heart was still not beating.. "Can you tell me what you saw please?". She motioned to her face and pushed her tongue to stretch out her bottom lip.

My heart hit the next beat as I realized she was talking about chewing tobacco. My relief must have been obvious because she started to tell me how bad of a drug it was and how it could cause him to die. I told her I was sure that he already knew that and that it was a choice that he was making. I thanked her for telling me and assured her that it would not keep her from staying the night.

As I told Mr. LbF the sequence of events I made sure to relate the story in a manner that had him grabbing for his bullet proof vest. Then we had a good laugh and reveled in the innocence of our sweet girl.

There is no going back to this time once it has past. In another heart beat she will not feel the need to tell me everything that concerns her. She may resent my hero cape, and helicopter ways. That is of course right up to the point she has her own daughter and comes asking to borrow the keys to the SWAT van.