By Dee Jason
VP, Riverton and Mt. Pulaski Branch Manager
NMLS # 662874
Are parent’s good teachers? Sometimes you don’t get the answer to a question like this until a child is put in a situation requiring action. It’s especially heartwarming to see a kid follow safety rules because, as a parent, it’s not only an affirmation that your teaching stuck, but also relief that our kids know how to take care of themselves.
When we were planning for the bank’s upcoming “Play It Safe” events at our Riverton and Mt. Pulaski branches, I asked staff to tell me about a time they saw their children put safety training in action.
First, I gave my example: My youngest daughter is the newest driver in our household. The other day she and I were in the vehicle headed to an appointment. I was driving and picked up my phone to look at a text message. She told me I was making her nervous and took my phone away and told me she would respond for me. I felt terrible for not only making her nervous, but doing something that I pound in my girls’ heads all the time. . . ”Don’t text and drive!” I was very proud of her and terribly ashamed of my actions. I hope that she will continue to make those wise decisions, especially when she is in a vehicle with her friends.
Mt. Pulaski Teller Jody Bruce tells this harrowing story: “My daughter, Allie, and her friend were waiting for the bus, and the bus had stopped and put out the stop sign for them to cross. Luckily, Allie looks both ways ALWAYS, because a semi ignored the stopped school bus and stop sign. Neither would be here if they hadn’t looked. I am very thankful she followed that rule. She’s now passing that rule along to her own children.”
Even with the best of training, parents worry. And grandparents worry, too. Mt. Pulaski Universal Banker Linda Dirks says, “My grandson is about one year old. I worry about him walking and hitting his head or falling down steps. To overcome my fears, I keep in mind he has very loving and protective parents who have safe guards all over the home, and God is in control.”
Gretchen Cromwell, teller supervisor, has her own fears about her kids’ safety. “We live on a farm, and we know that there are lots of potential dangers for us and our two children. We warn them often about being around the animals and barn safety in general, but we also try to make sure that we are out there with the kids, keeping an eye on them, correcting and teaching as needed . . . but trying to have fun too!”
Sometimes we’re fortunate enough to have our kids take safety planning into their own hands. Mt. Pulaski Teller Supervisor Michele Tremaine is very proud of her girls who came up with their own fire escape plan and “informed me what it was.” She says they also came up with a plan in case of a break in.