Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Poison Control & Mother's Day

Today I had my first real parent scare.

I don’t count the time when I woke up in the middle of the night and thought Penelope was missing (I must have had a bad dream because she was in her bassinet beside us.) Or the time I stupidly forgot to pack formula for our 8 hour + plane trip to New Hampshire. Those were both scary moments for sure but there is nothing like the fear of thinking your child could be hurt.

As I was putting a bunch of books in Penelope’s bookshelf, Penelope managed to get into my silver jewelry cleaner.

I am aware that babies love to get into everything, especially things that can harm them, which is why I’m usually very good at keeping those things up high. However, in my attempt to rearrange our home I temporarily put the jewelry cleaner on a shelf that I thought Penelope couldn't reach.

When I came back into the living room I found her on the side of the house we use for storage. And right next to her was a bunch of items she pulled of the shelves, and as you know one of those items was the jewelry cleaner.

The good news is the cover was still on so I knew that she hadn’t drank the stuff. But it has a super strong smell and as I picked her up I could smell it on her face. I knew then that she has licked the outside of the container. To help you understand my concern, this stuff is messy. The outside of the container is greasy from some of it spilling and I had it wrapped in some tissue paper because it gets everywhere.

It’s amazing how fast you can move when you’re afraid. As I was sitting on my bed, Penelope on my lap, the phone dialing,  I wondered how I got to my room so fast.  How had I managed to swoop up my daughter grab the number for poison control, and dial it, all in about a second?

After explaining the situation the lady put me on hold as she looked up some more information about the product. I was instructed to give Penelope sips of water and dutifully did it until she returned. When she came back on the line she gave us some happy news: that Penelope would be 100% okay. At the very most she’d have some irritation in the mouth which could be soothed with sips of water throughout the day.

I was so grateful that our sweet baby was going to be okay but I couldn’t help but feel like I had totally lost the mother of the year award (not that I was going to win it anyway.)

Feeling a bit bummed I started on my morning chores. For me, cleaning is therapeutic. Especially washing dishes. I don’t know why but it’s something I like to do when I need to think. As I was putting the dishes away a thought passed through my head: 

There will be more moments like this.

Not necessarily moments I need to call poison control (though there could be), but moments when I’ll feel afraid, or worried, and like a crappy parent. Then it dawned on me other moms have probably felt that way too at times.

I realize that this was certainly not my best mommy moment but it was important for me to realize that it won’t be my last. Part of parenting is trial and error and learning from mistakes. Every parent at some point has had a parent fail moment, and the best thing we can do is laugh at them later.

And on a completely separate note, and just in case I don’t get another chance to write this week, Happy Mother’s Day! Go give your mom a hug--it’ll mean more to her than you’ll know.

Here are some of my favorite moms:
My Grandma Allison holding baby Penelope.

My Mom.

My "spiritual" Mom, Deb. She taught me that not all family has to be blood.
My Step-Mom.

My Mother-in-Law, Sara torturing Jesse. ;)

(And your mom managed to keep you alive thus far. That in itself is worth celebrating!)