I know I am not supposed to compare my children or assume that what worked for one will work for the other… but here I am, in a position where I let my “It worked for Irene” get in the way of common sense. You see, with Irene, if you told her no or to not touch something, she listened. You only really had to tell her once. Because of this, the only real baby proofing we did in our house was to put a lock on the cabinet with all the cleaning supplies and baby gates on the stairs.
When Sam started crawling, we decided to try the same technique with him. He would reach for an electrical socket, and we would tell him no. He would look at us, shake his head, and with the other hand, reach for the same socket. After a few weeks on this, we finally convinced him to leave the sockets alone. Then, Sam started walking. His new found freedom also allowed him to go play in his two favorite rooms: the kitchen and the bathroom.
In the bathroom, Sam could be found shredding an entire roll of toilet paper or playing with the toilet water. If he happened to be in the master bathroom, you could also add rifling through the drawers and cabinets. In the kitchen, Sam loved to open and close every drawer and cabinet. He would pull out cooking tools to chew on (his favorite was my basting brush or the silicone cupcake holders). Sam also loved to drop toys into the drawers with all my nice serving dishes. Needless to say, we never let him spend more than a few minutes alone in the kitchen before we intervened and tried to redirect his interest.
All through this, Peter and our nanny have been encouraging me to baby proof the cabinets and drawers. And yet, I resisted. These were new, custom made cabinets and I didn’t want to sully them with screw holes. Plus, I really hate those stupid baby proofing locks. They make it so hard to quickly get into a drawer when you are in the middle of cooking.
(I think you can see where I am going with this.)
Fast forward to this past Saturday. Peter was busy with Irene, so I took Sam down to our room so I could keep an eye on him and get a shower in. On days when I am home alone with Sam, we do this often. He wanders around the bathroom playing with his bath toys while I get a quick shower. So, here I am, in the shower, just rinsing out the last of the conditioner when I hear the sound of plastic bouncing on the wood floor. At first, this didn’t seem too out of the ordinary, but luckily, I decided to take a quick look. To my horror, Sam was standing in the middle of the bathroom with a pile of percocet (left over from my fall down the stairs last October) at his feet. Somehow Sam had managed to get the childproof lid off the bottle and dump the contents onto the floor. I looked just as Sam was picking up one of the pills and moving it to his mouth.
I ripped open the door to the shower and screamed, “Sam NO!”. I scared the boy so bad, he dropped the pill and began crying his eyes out. I honestly didn’t care that I had scared him. I just wanted him to drop the pill and step away from the pile.
Once I got the pills cleaned up, I spent the next hour staring at Sam. Watching to see if his pupils changed, observing his behavior for any indication that he had sampled the percocet. Peter, spent that hour installing all the baby proofing drawer pulls in the kitchen and moving anything dangerous in our bathroom far out of Sam’s reach.
Lesson learned… and I made a major contribution to the therapy fund jar. (I’m still unsure in who’s honor… me, Peter or Sam.)
Have you every experienced a baby proofing fail?