I guess this just proves that our own littlel blessings are best!
by Marilyn Mackenzie
Just when you thought you could relax a bit, because your child reached toddler state, you discovered you had a "climber" on your hands!
My son is 18 now, but at about 18 months of age, he climbed out of his crib and wondered down the hall to the living room where he announced, "Hi everybody!" A big boy bed soon replaced that crib. We didn't want him hurting himself when he climbed out of bed to find out what kinds of fun things happened in the living room late at night or early in the morning.
This memory was prompted by a discussion in one of the e-newsletter digests in which I participate. The discussion has been over whether or not a crib net should be used and how soon is too soon to put a child in a toddler bed or twin bed.
Some were horrified that the discussion included putting up a crib net. They thought it sounded like parents were talking about binding their kids with ball and chain. These discussions reminded me of some stories I heard about a toddler to beat all toddlers.
Years ago, I heard a motivation speaker on the topic of how to balance your home business and mom life. We were on a cruise for a sales training trip, and this wonderfully witty and busy mom was one of our featured speakers. I just wish I could remember her name.
She was a mom of a couple of "normal" kids. Then, she had her 4th child. He was a terror. She told this huge group of women that every night after she tucked her child into bed, she bolted his bedroom door from the outside. The whole auditorium groaned or gasped or made some other sound of surprise. Then she proceeded to explain why.
This kid, at age 19 months learned to climb from the crib and quietly pick up a stool to reach the doorknob of his room. He opened the doorknob, left his bedroom, climbed down the stairs and went into the kitchen. There, he found a stool to climb and got on top of the kitchen counters, reached over and turned on the water (cold water, thank goodness). There was only one sink, and this busy mom had left dishes soaking in that sink, so the stopper was in. The child either was really quiet in doing all of this, or the rest of the family were really sound sleepers.
The mom got up first (she thought) that morning to find three inches of water in her kitchen and her 19 month old son on top of the refrigerator. That was the first time he had ever escaped from his crib!
The second time he escaped, he made his way downstairs and picked up the phone. It had one of those red buttons that you can press that will dial 911. The whole house woke up at 3 am to the sound of police and fire sirens and pounding at the doors.
After that, this mom thought she'd be smart and install a gate at the door to the kid's room, and she took away the stool. Escape number three was accomplished by dragging all of his big stuffed animals to the gate and standing on them to climb over it. The cute little guy found the garage door opener and kept pressing the button. The family awoke to the sound of the garage door going up and down.
The police, fire department, and the pediatrician advised this mom to lock him in his room each night (after she had really baby-proofed the room!) with a snack and juice on his table and enough toys to keep him busy. For some reason, this baby only slept about 4 hours at a stretch, no matter what time they put him to bed!
I guess this just proves that we should all be thankful for our own little blessings. My little guy showing up in the living room and announcing, "Hi everybody!" was nothing compared to what this mom experienced!