Funny ha-ha?

Today something unusual happened–I got a visitor. Even more unusual than that was who showed up.

Katya, Emma, and I were eating a late lunch when the doorbell rang.

“Hi, I’m from Social Services.”

As a master of understatement I merely said, “Oh?”

Apparently someone had called that morning to report that “my” three-year old was outside alone (and naked) wandering around near the 4-lane road we live on, while the dad slept. Now, I was relieved as soon I heard the specifics, for while Katya may wander around the house naked or in a diaper, she has strong ethics about wearing clothing outside. The social worker, who was really very nice, asked me a few questions, assured me that even if it were my child, it wouldn’t be a big deal, took names, and the two of us sort of rambled on about why it could or couldn’t have been Katya.

Meanwhile Katya has gotten more confident around this particular stranger and has gleaned the gist of our conversation. She stands by the window and in her best storytelling mode (which she is very good at) starts chattering “Emma was outside yesterday on the freepath (her word for freeway, which we don’t actually live on). Yesterday Emma was outside. ” No! I can tell the worker suddenly thinks I’ve been lying this whole time. :)

Anyway, she left without incident leaving me rather bemused. I have a good idea that it was our neighbor’s kid wandering around our yard as they usually do. I didn’t say anything about that, however, because I actually know the family involved, instead of having seen “something” from a moving car. That’s the person I don’t understand. Social Services lady, bah, she’s just doing her job, and probably was bored stiff by our conversation. But seeing a kid in a yard (with no clothes on, heaven forbid), and SOME adult figure that you assume is sleeping (relaxing? watching? talking on the phone?) and you instantly jump to the conclusion that Social Services should be involved because there must be active negligence or abuse occurring? And all this on a street with a speed limit of 35 and you’re probably going at least 5 over that. Good eye, mate. Here, I’ll take the high road. I won’t be nosy and foolishly judgmental by assuming that you, the anonymous phone tip, must be nosy and foolishly judgmental.

It’s funny though. While the worker was there, I was consumed with thoughts of “There’s stuff on the floor, oh no! The table’s a mess. The kids have ketchup on their faces…am I going to get in trouble??”

31

05 2005

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  1. 1

    Sounds like you’re being a pretty normal mom and why the heck can’t kids walk around naked in their own yard?