Back in January, I wrote a post that compared growing up in Madison to growing up out in the country. I was worried that my step-daughter wouldn’t have any space available to get away from her annoying parents when she reached that particular stage. She wasn’t quite at that stage yet, but, my, how quickly things change.
In fact, our daughter has discovered plenty of places in downtown Madison to escape her parents. There’s the coffee shop. The library. The ever-popular Fast Max gas station. And the houses of all her friends; other people’s parents are never quite as annoying as your own. This might be true even at 40.
My concerns back in January were ever-so-fleeting. Parenting is a constant game of catch-up; the moment you become adjusted to the person your child has become, they change into someone completely different. Our daughter has become one of those kids (hopefully well-behaved) you see wandering the streets of downtown Madison.
When I was our daughter’s age and a little older, the mall was the place to go. This meant someone had to drive us there. Let me say thank you right now to Mom and Dad and all the other parents who did that because it probably sucked. The beauty of parenting downtown is all the places you don’t have to drive your child. You don’t have to drive them to the movies. To the mall. To get ice cream. To go shopping. To the library. To a bookstore. You get the idea.
It will be quite a few years before our daughter is driving which will bring a whole new set of worries. Because we live downtown, she has plenty to keep her entertained until then.