Saturday, July 24, 2010

On High Alert

I thought our house was childproof for the most part. Now, I'm pretty sure that it isn't even close. What made me change my mind? How about watching Ada play with a bottle of my prenatal vitamins from the top of my dresser and get them open in a matter of seconds. We quickly took them away from her but I was startled by Rick's comment that that's the second time she had opened the bottle. Okay. Then why is is still playing with it and how can we make it less accessible?

I was reminded of the vitamin incident the next day when doing laundry. While loading clothes into the machine, a prenatal vitamin dropped out of the pile where she had removed the lid of the bottle the previous night. Not a good sign, but a good sign at the same time since that means she didn't swallow it.

We try to keep a close eye on her, but it isn't easy and it doesn't take long for her to get into things to the point where they are dangerous. And we are so much more distracted by the new baby that it leaves her a wider window of time to get into trouble.

For instance, just this week I was preparing the toppings for a pizza for dinner. Ada was at the computer in the kitchen watching cartoons. Iain was in his bouncy chair as I chopped, oiled and shredded toppings. Iain decided he wanted to be fussy so I picked him up for a cuddle and not a minute later I look over to check on Ada --three feet away from me mind you -- and she is covered in clear nail polish. Yes, she did paint her toes. But she also painted her shin, thigh, wrist, her chin and a little bit of the computer chair. She saw her window of opportunity and took it. Needless to say, dinner went on hold while I set Iain back down so I could grab the nail polish remover and a cotton ball. Imagine Rick's surprise five minutes later when he comes home to Ada running toward him yelling "Daddy, Daddy" as she always does and me saying, "Don't let her touch you! She's covered in nail polish and remover." Once he had five seconds to take off his shoes, I quickly put him in charge of getting her into the tub and removing the rest of the polish so I could again calm a screaming Iain and get dinner into the oven.

Needless to say, I think there is some truth to the idea that parents need to have eyes in the back of their heads...and be able to look around corners, through walls, and have internal GPS systems to monitor their child's whereabouts at all times. Until I am issued all of those superpowers, I think I'm just going to have to try to be less distracted and do a better job of locking up, removing, and storing anything that could be remotely dangerous on higher ground. But I know that Ada is too smart for her own good and will just pull up a chair to reach things or climb up the shelves to obtain the elusive "no no" items. There is only so much a parent can do.

Moral of the story: Be prepared to be even more vigilant once you have a second child as your first child might be more rebellious, and will have larger windows of time to do much more damage.

1 comment:

RebeccaC said...

Good lord. I can strangely identify with this because of our puppy (sorry for the child/puppy comparison). You wouldn't believe how frequently I turn around for 3 seconds only to turn back and realize she has something in her mouth (plant leaves, someone's chewed gum, a piece of glass!!!!, bird feathers!!!!!!!). Its terrifying.
While part of me feels that this must be good "training" for human children the other part of me is even more petrified because human children have hands and seem to be even sneakier than puppies. Good luck to you Momma!