Guess I have to learn how to use the drill

Keeping this kid alive has become my full time job, and if given a performance review right now, I’m not sure the review would be glowing.  Long gone are the days of leaving him in the exersaucer or jumperoo for a few minutes so that I can run to the bathroom, brush my teeth, or answer the door.  Even the giant tub doesn’t work anymore because I know he wants nothing more than to pull up on that shiny faucet and then fling himself backward and crack his head open.  For being such a ball of chub, he is incredibly sneaky and fast.  He sort of reminds me of a greased piglet, but without the grease.  This agility and determination totally snuck up on me.  Thus, the excuse for not having the house suitably childproofed.  Lame, I know.

I have somehow gone from being the person (before child) who researched, planned for, and executed things in a proactive manner, to the person with child who runs around screaming, “Oh shit!  Don’t touch that!  How the hell did you even GET there?!  Crap.  I have to baby proof that now.”  I’m functioning on a completely reactionary basis these days, and it’s not doing any of us any favors, especially not my too curious and slick for his own good child.

I recall the stress of registering while I was pregnant. The overwhelming task of picking out things that you may or may not need, may or may not be vital to your future child’s health and well being, may or may not be giant pieces of crap.  You really just don’t know and can’t tell.  Totally, completely stressful.  I decided to not even bother looking at childproofing stuff.  I mean, really, it was going to be, like, forever until we needed any of that anyway.  We had all the time in the world!  Stupid, stupid me.  Heed this advice.  Start childproofing the minute you see that positive pee stick.  Do it before the morning sickness sets in, before the exhaustion, before your belly is so big that you don’t even know what color polish is on your toes.  If you can’t do it that early, at least do it before the baby comes.

There is something about having a baby, a life that you are responsible for.  It is like stepping into a science fiction time warp or maybe a parenting black hole.  The first few weeks are nothing but a blur, and while they do seem to go incredibly slow at times (especially when it feels like your nipples are going to fall off and the baby won’t stop crying and learn how wonderful sleeping at night can really be), before you know it, time is whizzing by faster than you can wrap your head around.   Next thing you know, you’ve got a baby hauling chubby ass across your kitchen floor.  While you’re still trying to figure out how to introduce finger foods to him, he’s on to trying to figure out how to pull the refrigerator open and make himself a four course meal.

Yes, this lack of preparedness has left me feeling like quite the inadequate and dumbass mother more than once the last few weeks.  One afternoon Kendall was fighting his nap as usual, so I left him in his crib and exited the room.  He fussed and made the usual noises of frustration.  I ignored.  Then I heard what I know to be his “Help me!” cry.  I sprinted to his room and found him in the corner of his crib with the cord from the baby monitor slung across his neck.  OMG.  Let me just tell you, it makes me shudder just to type that.  Somehow he morphed into Gumby and managed to reach behind and below his crib to pull the monitor cord up and over his crib bumper and got tangled up in it.  Of course, only then did it strike me and Scott that is was supremely idiotic to have that plugged in there.

This afternoon presented me with another humdinger of a wakeup call.  I put Kendall in the living room in front of some toys and ran to the front room to look for my phone.  I was gone maybe two minutes when I heard the horrible noise of glass shattering.  I knew, without even seeing, exactly what happened.  He had made his way into the kitchen and pulled a glass pitcher from one of the lower cabinets.  I screamed while simultaneously sprinting, “KENDALL!!  DON’T MOVE!!”  I was there in no more than a second, and he sat there, motionless, as a big frown spread across his face, followed by sad tears.  He was unscathed, despite the sea of shattered glass that surrounded him.

See, I feel most guilty for this incident because I knew it was coming.  It was only a matter of time.  I’ve seen his curiosity in the kitchen.  I’ve tried to divert his attention to the designated cabinet full of CoolWhip containers and wooden spoons, but he looks at me as if to say, “But, mom.  There are no blenders, knives, flamethrowers or any other things that could maim or kill me in that cabinet.  Booooring.”  We’ve been meaning to put the cabinet latches on for a month now.  The package is sitting patiently on top of the kitchen counter, but…well…. time just gets away from you.  Scott is now on a two week business trip, and I intended to have him install them when he gets back; however, there is no way in hell I’m waiting two weeks now.  For all I know, he could be scaling the drawers and sticking his hand down the garbage disposal in two weeks.  So instead of catching up on Lost tonight, I’m going to figure out how to install those damn latches myself.  Then I’m going to run out and buy a giant roll of packing bubbles and affix them to Kendall.

Kendall is 9 months, 1 week and 2 days old

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  1. Well, you could have saved at least one baby while sharing your stories. I saw the baby monitor post on the nest and when putting DD’s new crib together (original recalled, ugh) I saw that her ‘baby crack machine) was plugged in a few inches below the mattress level. My initial reaction was that she could never reach it, but having read your post, I moved that bad boy across the room.

  2. Ha! I love your blog, have been reading since before Kendall made his appearance. If it makes you feel any better, my child is some sort of evil genius and has managed to undo EVERY PIECE OF CHILDPROOFING I PUT INTO EFFECT (and subsequently give me at least 5 near-strokes a week). Cabinet locks? He can unlock them. Plastic outlet covers? He pulls them out. The bathtub? Didn’t even bother. CONSTANT VIGILANCE has become my motto. It sounds like Kendall is on the same path! Good luck with that, and just remember – they could very well use that insight and curiosity to help us retire early.

  3. Tell me about it. I didn’t bother putting up a gate at the bottom of the stairs, my tiny little girl is not going to be able to scale those babies for a while. Well, she proved us wrong yesterday. She made it up two stairs by herself before we saw her. Then I sat at the top and DH was behind her, egging her on. She made it up and was damn proud of herself. And then I grumbled – I’ve got to go buy a fourth gate. Oh well. They grow up so fast.

  4. We had the same thing happen to us with the crack machine cord…it’s amazing how far those chubby little arms can reach. And forget the cute little blankies, Josh managed to pull it off the rocker and twirl it, spaghetti style around his head…must have taken at least 5 years off my life!

  5. Oh man…here I thought I had some time and now, thanks to your handy dandy age stamp reminding me that Kendall is a mere 2 months older than my sweet, still semi-stationary Gianna, I’m thinking we should get a move on! Thanks for the nudge….and for sharing these experiences that I’m not sure I would have been able to share!! Your honesty is commendable and much appreciated!

  6. Jill, I dutifully put the latches on all my lower cabinets, except one, the one she helped me cook out of. And do you know where she ended up getting her 1st emergency room booboo from. CHURCH, with everybody standing around and watching how cute this 18 mo. old was as she climbed up onto the organ bench, of course she fell off and to this day I do not know what she possibly could have hit to require the 5 stiches under her right eye. I even went looking for any kind of blood spatter, there was nothing. I’m just so thankful it was Joey who was watching her at the time, she is now 9 and I don’t think he has ever recovered.

    she is now 9 and


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