I have a confession to make.
It stems from the fact that my son, at this point in his little life (16 months old today, TYVM,) is not exactly graceful. Actually, you can’t really soften up the cold hard facts on this one – my kid falls on his big old baby head. All. The. Time.
Just when the last round of bruises starts to fade and I think he really is getting a handle on this “walking” thing, a clunk and a cry crushes my lofty dreams once more.
After the fall that led to actual STITCHES (BTW, when your toddler gets stitches, moms come OUT OF THE WOODWORK with their own stories and you find out fast, that Jr is far from the only early walker to have had something sewn back together,) I went as crazy as I thought I could, padded out the corners and pointy parts of everything, put up an elaborate series of gates, and erected a “safety zone” – an 8′ by 8′ penned off area on the carpet in the living room where he can play safely when I can’t be right next to him. (He had 3 stitches – one had come out on its own by the time I could bring myself to take the picture above – we all felt so bad!! Below – the Safety Zone!)
But no baby wants to be in “the safety zone” all the time – a baby needs to live on the edge and explore! To feel the wind of the dog’s wagging tale on his face, and the thrill of unloading the Tupperware drawer while mom cooks dinner! To be free – FREE, to chase the big blue ball back and forth and Swiffer imaginary dust bunnies for 30 or 40 minutes at a time on the hard wood floor. (Swiffers are the best toy EVER to toddlers – who knew?)
But inevitably, time out of the carpet-padded pen resulted, no matter how short and no matter how close a watchful adult was, in a clunk/cry/new-bruise-on-head situation.
I had no choice. That is my story and I am sticking to it.
I confess – my son now walks around the house looking as though he has joined the teddy bear pillow army:
At school he sports a cushy “beanie” (as the cool kids call them these days,) because I can’t be the mom who puts a quilted, teddy bear patterned helmet on her kid at school, but at home and at Nana and Pop’s, he rocks this puppy any time he leaves the safety zone.
Know what? Goose egg free. Should’ve been THAT mom sooner, I guess.