So, as promised, I took Mr. SLS' niece to pick her own pumpkin this past Sunday. Because her older brother (who has a different mother) was there with his dad for the weekend, we took him along, too. I no longer feel any guilt for wanting just one child.
First, to be clear, I like her brother, he's always been a nice kid and for the most part minds and follows directions. Neither one of them are mouthy or whatever. But, together these two children bicker. All the time. Which, I guess is what kids do. But it works my nerves.
Secondly, he's 10 and she's 5. He's also sort of a typical boy, which means he's a little bit reckless and always running and jumping and climbing on stuff. His little sister wants to do all that, too, but her legs are shorter and she's not as agile. And it frustrates him to slow down for her and frustrates her when she can't keep up.
He runs and gets on a swing, so she gets on a swing, too. He's swinging all high and frankly scaring me so I say, "Nephew SLS don't swing so high!" and then Mr. SLS (yes, he came too) was pushing Niece SLS on the swing and asked me why I was telling Nephew SLS to stop and I said cause he was scaring me and all I could see was his thin little body flying out of that swing into the air and smashing into a gaggle of pumpkins all broken and crumpled.
Mr. SLS said, "He's fine. Let him swing." And he was right.
That is why children need a dad AND a mom. Because, as a mom, I know I would probably react that way all of the time and likely overprotect my children. He saw that, really, though the swinging scared me, it was fine. Everything was fine.
Here's another example of me possibly being too cautious. Mr. SLS had gone off to hunt us up some water and they were still on the swings. Nephew SLS had to use the restroom. I wanted him to wait until his uncle came back to go with him, but he said he couldn't hold it. I made Niece SLS get off the swings and we went to the bathroom with her brother. Mind you, I could SEE the bathrooms from the swing. But, I couldn't take a chance that some perv might be in the bathroom and there was no way in hell I was leaving the little one on the swings.
When he caught up with us, Mr. SLS didn't think I was being too much though he did say chances are Nephew SLS would have been OK by himself.
Anyway, I think that balance you get from a mom AND a dad is important.