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Is there such a thing as an overprotective parent?

I'm sitting here at my table in the living room listening to little kids out the front of my house playing and although it makes me smile, i have this sicky feeling in my stomach.

You see I'm in the house, just me and the dog as Agent M is away playing on his bike with his friend from school. Something that i used to do as a kid and something that most kids in the future will do. So why do i feel sick?

I think its because I'm not there to watch over him. I think its because my my mind will occasionally throw out a scary thought of what could go wrong ...

*I think I'll make a - What if he falls under a car? - fruit tea*
*I need to put another - What if he goes missing? - load in the washing machine*

My mind is so scary these days ... But how much of that is my fault? How much is it because of what we hear about in the news or read in magazines? I don't remember there being as many sex offenders lurking when i was little but  I'm sure there probably where. I don't remember hearing horror stories about kids being abducted but a look through old articles proves they were ... we just didn't hear about them.

I don't want Agent M to miss out on having a childhood. I used to play outside for hours when i was a lot younger than him (he's 9) and i was fine but i just cant shake this sicky feeling. I know I'll be like this till he comes in looking for his dinner perfectly fine and if anything a little knackered from his cycling.

Maybe that's just the kind of mum I'm going to be. Maybe I'll just worry about him all the time. But then, he's priceless and means everything to me so perhaps that's to be expected.