It's also problematic when your oldest child gets to go on the bouncy house, but your younger 3 year old twins aren't quite big enough. So you relent and let them go, not wanting them to be in therapy for your "favoritism" in their adult years. And about 2 seconds later one of them will get kicked in the head by his brother and require rescuing.
And then the other 3 year old will stay perched up on top of the huge slide for ages, blocking all the other kids and refusing to slide down. So you'll drag yourself through all those holes and cubbies and up the slide, to hold his hand coming down, because that's the sort of parent you are. You are also a parent now totally covered with germs. And the minute you start putting shoes back on the brothers, that same child will sneak off into the bouncy house again only to perch up top and refuse to come down the slide. Again. This time, you'll send older brother in with instructions to "give him a good push" so you can catch him at the bottom. Because maybe you're not as great a parent as you thought you were and all those bouncy house screams have gone to your head.
And then that 3 year old? Well he'll have a massive tantrum of rage all the way to the car, bitterly in anguish over his removal from his bouncy house fun. That therapy I mentioned above? Yeah, he'll probably need it anyway.
This post was written over a week ago, and scheduled for today. I thought about postponing it a bit in light of what happened on Friday - or even editing it. However, I decided to let it stand as is. Because part of parenting well for me is being able to laugh at my own mistakes, and at the daily ups and downs of parenting itself. But believe me when I say that my thoughts are with the families and their losses in Connecticutt. My hope is that when there are other troubled teens out there who are isolated and considering a destructive path -- then they would receive the effective help and intervention from someone who cares before another tragedy occurs.