Sausage Practices Restraint

Like family, we are tied to each other. This is what all good musicians understand. ~ Billy Joel

After months of depression and inertia, it required something extraordinary to get me blogging again. Something so ridiculous, so unforeseen, that I just had to share it with the world. Something that would light a fire of absurdity under my ass, and get me tapping at the keyboard once again.

That something happened last week. On Halloween. Who would have thought that something interesting would happen on Halloween?

I made a lifelong dream of Loving Husband’s come true that night. (No, it’s not what you think it is, you perv. Get your mind out of the gutter.)

I bought him a lightsaber. (Again, not like that. You are FILTHY.)

Adorable, they are.

We dressed Sausage up as Yoda, and Loving Husband and I went as Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia. We went out, not so much to trick-or-treat as to show off our costumes and drink beer.

Now, Sausage loves nothing better than to run. So we took him out of his stroller and let him run on the sidewalk, charging past people who were offering him candy, bouncing off the costumed legs of strangers. He loved it. He loved it a WHOLE. LOT.

But he refused to hold hands. He would scream and flail and hurl himself to the ground anytime we tried. That’s no good, especially when you’re in a city with traffic moving by only a few feet away.

There are no clear photos from that night, he was moving too damn fast.

Fortunately, he has really short legs, so we were able to keep up with him and grab him anytime he seemed about to veer off the sidewalk. But I had my heart in my throat the entire time. (Loving Husband was cool as a cucumber, the jerk. “He’s fine, I’ve got him,” he’d say. I would have glared at him if I was willing to take my eyes off of Sausage.)

So when we got home, I made a small purchase. Amazon has everything, you know, and sure enough, it provided me with exactly what I needed.

It arrived two days later, just in time to try it out on our morning walk.

It’s a child leash. A child leash shaped like a frog.

It needs a name. Larry the Leash? Terry Tether? Randy Restraint? No, that last one sounds too much like a sex toy.

My pre-baby self always swore that I’d never be one of those moms. You know, the ones who tie their children up rather than supervising them properly. I would never leash my child like a dog! I would hold his hand, firmly but gently guiding him away from danger while teaching him what he needs to know about the world around him. He would be disciplined enough to listen when I told him to stop, and would be happy to stay near me.

Yeah, right.

I guess I had it coming, thinking that way. Karma insisted that I end up with a little guy who is so fiercely independent, so stubborn, that at the ripe old age of 18 months he demands to run free. On the city streets. While giving his poor mother a heart attack.

So now I leash him. And he LOVES it. He can run ‘free’, with full use of both his hands, and I’m able to keep calm in the knowledge that he can’t get more than three feet away from me. Hopefully now I can also work on the hand-holding thing without all the pressure of what might happen if he should pull away.

This is one ridiculously happy baby right here, with his Grandma in tow.

So I’m trying to come up with a moral to this story. Maybe it’s that my version of attachment parenting involves actual tethering? Or maybe it’s that my pre-baby know-it-all self was kind of a judgmental asshole? I guess really it’s that Sausage is his own little self, with absolutely no interest in what I always thought my kid would be like. And that I’m going to have to deal with him on his own terms.

And his terms, for now, include leashing. Oh well. Maybe I could pass him off as some sort of a rare, hairless monkey. Then he wouldn’t be a leashed child, he’d be a fashionable and expensive pet.

Sounds good to me.

41 responses to “Sausage Practices Restraint

  1. I had to resort to a wrist “leash” with my youngest. As a toddler, he refused to ride in the stroller, and at a busy zoo, that can be a problem. I finally broke down and bought one of those leashes that attaches mother’s wrist to child’s. Yes, I got looks, but he loved it, because he could stroll around without the confines of a stroller. And if toddler is happy, Momma is happy…

    • I’ve noticed over the past few days that the people who give the most looks are those who don’t have small children. People with little kids are just like, “Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.”

  2. happy to see you back in my “reader”… nice family costumes and as for the runaway Sausage.. ya gotta do what ya gotta do. It is only the beginning of things that will come back to bite you in the ass πŸ™‚

  3. Oftentimes children don’t get the memo on how they are supposed to be. I had a hot pink leash for my firstborn and one of my childless friends gave me the “she’s not a dog” judgemental speech. No, you’re right b/c I wouldn’t want to kill myself if I lost my dog in the airport but if I lose her, the shit is gonna get real. Step away from my leash.

    Welcome back, you have been missed and the Sausage is adorbs as are his parents!

    • Maybe our next kid won’t need the leash, but this one certainly does. So it stays. Oh well, just one of many ways that I’m turning out not to be the mom I thought I’d be. Thanks for the welcome back, I’ve missed you guys too!

  4. We have a leash, much like yours actually. Only it’s a monkey. We haven’t needed it in awhile so the kids play with it and ‘walk’ each other. Clearly it has not cause any emotional trauma whatsoever.

    • I suspect I’m the only one who’s going to be emotionally traumatized by it, and that just because I’m going to be on the defensive every time I use it. Having ‘stop judging me’ fights in my head with all the people who give me funny looks, you know.

  5. Happy belated Halloween! Welcome back! Looking forward to more πŸ˜€

  6. Kathy I hope that you’re on the upswing, and that you’re feeling better…

  7. Some kids just need to be leashed for their own safety. I think it’s perfectly reasonable.

  8. I love your hairless monkey! Here in LA, where we carry dog in purses, you could totally get away with declaring Sausage a hairless monkey. Paris Hilton would be so jealous.
    Seriously though, there is nothing cuter than a toddler dressed up as Yoda. We convinced a friend of my son’s to go as Yoda. It took two months of psychological warfare but we did it and he was aDORable!

  9. I don’t know what I love more, the costumes or that trick-or-treating is mostly about the beer. FOLLOWED!

    • It’s not just about the beer. It’s also about the candy. And about getting dressed up in costume and going out in public. But you know, it is largely about the beer. Thanks for the follow!

  10. Thank goodness you put the black bar over the frog leash’s eyes. I almost recognized him. Love your blog. Found you via Let Me Start By Saying. Stop by and say hi on my blog and bring your leashed kid if you want.

  11. I was super judgmental too. Even with my first one because she was sooooooo well behaved. My second one though……she’s ‘independent’ and will f someone up if you try to put her in a stroller. I remember a screaming fit over hand-holding at the zoo where I spied another mother with a leashed child and though “Ah….that’s what they’re for.”
    No longer judgmental. πŸ˜€

  12. I love that you are LITERALLY an “attachment” parent. Brilliant. I think I see a meme coming on.

  13. A rare, hairless monkey… YES!
    I’m really surprised that I never had that issue with any of my 3 kids. I’ve seen those “leash people” and been all judgey in the past myself, Karma decided to pay me back in other ways. She’s a bitch.

    • I still get a little embarrassed by having my kid on a leash, and by the random strangers who comment on it. But the silly child just doesn’t want to hold hands, and he always seems to see something that he simply MUST investigate in the street. So it’s the leash. Maybe I’ll start telling people that he’s a biter.

      • Right? Hey, if it took me putting a helmet, leash, AND cone on my child to keep them safe, then you bet your ass I’d do it. That would just give me another reason to tell everyone to stop touching my cute kid. “She’s got rabies.” has a nice ring to it, and would keep the old lady germs off of her.

      • YES! Rabies! That’s it! Next time somebody comments on it, I’ll say he has rabies. Thank you! You have given me my new favorite comeback, and I cannot wait to use it!

      • YAY! I’m chock full of stupid, yet priceless, random excuses. All you have to do is ask…

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