It’s hard to be perfect at work. Everyone has a goof here or there. On occasion, I used to send emails without an attachment or forget to dial 9 to get out of the building while faxing, but things are different as a stay-at-home parent. Making an error can have amplified consequences.
Yesterday morning I was in the zone. Ava was in her Fisher-Price Space Saver high chair and Charlie was in the bouncer. I finished making myself an egg sandwich and already had the dishwasher unloaded. I was sipping coffee and shuffling along to the Fresh Beat Band as Ava finished eating, then moved us all to the living room for a few minutes of digestion in front of the tube.
As I lay on the sofa, with Charlie hoisted above me playing Superman, I noticed a smell. Little Clark Kent pointed into the distance (kitchen) and I turned to acknowledge a monster wave of smoke filling the room.
I jumped up, with Charlie in one arm, holding Ava the curious toddler monkey at bay with my foot, I entered my own little suburban Backdraft.
It was 9:24am on a Wednesday morning and I had a kitchen fire.
I guess I left the burner on while finishing my eggs and it just so happened, that’s where I parked Ava’s tray-top when she was finished. My adrenaline was pumping as I held Charlie side-saddle away from the action and knocked the blaze down with a torrent of water from the kitchen sink water gun.
I spent the afternoon scraping melted plastic off the range and went through 3 scented candles to mask the smell. Jen came home from work and said ‘it smelled very nice’ in our house. I’ve got the tray-top hidden in the garage.
Needless to say, I’ve gotta replace this fucker before she notices, blows a gasket and I get fired.
Plus, I should have an irate call from my Mom in 3…2…1…
EDITOR’S NOTE: Please feel free to hit ‘comment’ and share one of your own parenting blunders. God knows, it will take the heat (pun intended) off of me for a minute.
When my daughter was 2-ish, I stupidly had her sitting on the counter beside the stove because she loved to watch me cook. I had instructed her to never touch the stove, but the word “hot” really didn’t mean anything to her (hindsight). We have a flat surface stove top. I turned off the burner, moved a pot, and next think I know she was leaning over to see what I was doing and put her hand down directly on the burner.A call and visit to the pediatrician, 30 minutes in ice water, and a few blisters later I withdrew my “mom of the year” application.
As far as parental blunders go, I win.
During a vicious bout of baby-diarrhea, I may have lifted her up out the crib to sniff her diaper and may have hit her head on the moving ceiling fan. It was 3 a.m., the fan was on low, and she eventually stopped crying, but yeah, not dad’s finest moment.
Daddy's in Charge says
I have never made a blunder… both of my kids are still alive, so they are all learning moments.
While the hubby was away, I woke up to the sounds of the garbage truck coming up the street. Realizing I forgot to put the trash out, I ran as fast as I could downstairs. As soon as the garage door slammed behind me, I yelled “FU€%!” We have one of those awesome doorknobs that feel like the door is unlocked even though it really is. So I got the trash out but I had locked myself out with a just-waking-up 10 month old in the crib. Instead of a locksmith, a helpful neighbor called another neighbor to open my door. He was a trooper with the State Police, and he didn’t find much humor in my situation. It was really awkward. Thankfully, my kiddo was content to play in the crib for almost an hour and the cop didn’t call child services on me. Just one of many fine parenting-at-its-best stories. 😉
Just this week I slammed one of the twins hands in the car door, in my haste to re-open it and free her hand I nailed her in the head with the door, hard. All while in the grocery store parking lot. Nothing like having an audience to witness your blunder(s)
Oh, yes. Blunder city over here! One time I was “in the zone” as well and decided to tackle shipping gifts at the UPS store with my toddler in tow. She was strapped into her stroller and safely on the sidewalk by our parking spot while I unloaded all the boxes from our car. Yup- you guessed it…I forgot to put the brake on her stroller and she shimmied and shook it enough that it rolled down the sidewalk and crashed into the front of a car. Came to rest leaning forward half off the sidewalk. THANKFULLY she was strapped in and escaped major injury. I was no longer eligible for the “Multi-Tasking Mommy of the Year” award.
Liz (ShorelineMommy) says
I’ve never set anything on fire (yet) but I HAVE allowed my baby to fall down the stairs (twice), slip under the water in the bathtub, and fall down while a coffee table flipped over onto his head as I stood nearby cooking. All in a day’s work, right? Nobody’s perfect. 🙂
3..2..1.. here I am to say only that we all make mistakes …but w/fire only takes minutes. You and your brothers and your Dad know how OCD I am after working 12 yrs as a Burn Unit nurse and seeing the worst. The first thing I looked for in your new home was where are the smoke alarms…or do they have a sprinkler system? Glad you were on the same level and only a few feet away to contain it and put it out.xo Mom
Philip Hildreth says
Boy, have I had my share of blunders.. Did you ever wonder what happens when you load a toddler into a collapsable stroller when it is NOT locked open? Not pretty. at. all.
I am glad your “teachable moment” turned out as just a scare and nothing more serious!
while i don’t have any children of my own, i was recently babysitting my nephews only to burn him with the hot water in the bathroom. my younger nephew was potty training so he was incredibly interested in all things bathroom and unrolling all of the toilet paper from the roll into the garbage can waiting below. i turned to tell him no when my other nephew finished washing his hands so i turned off the cold water instead of the hot. he cried, and we got him an ice pack until all was well again.