Do you remember when you first found out that you were expecting and you started envisioning what your future would look like? For me, it included Saturday morning cuddle sessions, a sunny picnic on a cloudless day, images of myself being the picture of patience and a perfect child that was able to roam freely and wasn’t discouraged to discover his surroundings as he wished.
Part of that was spot on. I do have a pretty perfect child in my eyes, and there are plenty of times that we have had Saturday morning cuddle sessions. The picnic hasn’t happened yet, but I’m sure it will someday.
Do you know what hasn’t happened and never will? Allowing my son to explore all the corners of the house at his own free will. What was I thinking! I had this parenting attitude (before I was even a parent, when I thought I knew it all) that restricting my child would mean that I was too lazy to show them the proper and safe way to use or do something or that I would present that I didn’t trust them. I was so, so wrong.
Also, the patience isn’t quite the level I had anticipated for myself, but that’s a different conversation for a different day.
Now I just truly wish that I could go back to the days when I was creating my baby registry. I vividly remember the day, looking online for hours to find the safest car seat, the healthiest bottles and the highest rated breast pump. What did I not look at? Baby proofing supplies. I wasn’t going to be “that mom”.
Well “that mom” is now performing damage control. You know why they invent such amazing things like electric outlet covers, child safety straps, door finger pinch guards and cabinet locks? Because sometimes you have to go to the bathroom. And the first thing your child will do when he has a spare moment of unsupervised time will be to go for the forbidden items. You are not going to be in your child’s life 24/7 to ensure their safety, I promise you. You will go to the bathroom, you will need to take a shower, you may take two extra minutes loading the dishwasher while you think he’s watching Mickey Mouse. And on top of that, life is just unpredictable and you really would rather be more safe than sorry, am I right? And as far as trust? A toddler doesn’t have the mental capacity yet to be trusted with such serious things. They put all of their trust in us, their parents, to keep them safe. I discovered very quickly in my parenting journey that I needed to call in reinforcements by way of my friend, Jool Baby Products.
I was very quickly able to add the needed Outlet Covers (order extra to take on vacation – pro tip!), Child Safety Straps, Door Finger Pinch Guards and Cabinet Locks. Then I saw the “Baby on Board” signs. It never occurred to me to get those before, but do you know how helpful that would be if, heaven forbid, I were to get in an accident? They would know that my son would be in the back seat and could get him out quickly. I added enough for mine, my husband’s and my mother-in-law’s cars. This mama isn’t taking the minimalist approach any longer! Safety first!