I spent most of this past weekend baby proofing our house. Or trying to. Moving medicines from low bathroom cabinets into high closet shelves, removing bottles of liquid drain opener from next to the toilet to a locked linen closet, moving houseplants to places off-limits from our crawling Ladybug. I installed cabinet locks from Home Depot, though I should have checked to see if our local hardware store, Stalcup Hardware, had any of that stuff (but I do get birdseed and ice melt from them!).
It was an exercise in trying to make the world safe and perfect for my almost 11-month old daughter. But I felt it was a reminder that I’m not in control of anything! There will always be something she can bang her head on or some piece of lint on the floor that will inevitably end up in Bug’s mouth.
And that’s the rub with being an attentive parent: try though we might, we are not in control of most things. Another case in point: Bug’s schedule has been set in stone for months, and she’s finally changed it (now one nap, not two!) and my husband and I were a mess this weekend trying to adjust (but kudos to us, we rose to the occasion). Soon after learning to crawl, she’s already pulling herself up. Seems walking is next on the list. No dust settling on her feet, no desire to keep things the same.
It’s easy to get lulled into a sense of consistency and safety. That would be the rookie mistake. Because just as you can’t really baby proof your house, you can’t really baby proof your life. Nor would you want to, right? I read something recently that said most new parents just try to get through the early years – but they would be missing the heart of parenthood. We are not managing inconveniences, we are raising human beings.
We are learning that making room for baby in our lives mean changing our schedule, too. So this weekend we ran all over the community trying to tire Bug out for that one glorious nap. Here is where we went to keep her busy:
- Silver Diner in Fair Oaks for breakfast, bright and early
- Barnes and Noble for crawling around and looking at books, though those floors are not so clean
- Oak Mar Rec Center pool
On the agenda for the coming days:
- Lebanese Taverna Kids Day in Arlington on Wednesdays, 10:00 – 11:00am, free and free kids lunch after with adult lunch purchase
- Open Play at MoBu Kids in Falls Church, generally daily 12:30 – 4:00pm, $8 per hour
- Open Play at JW Tumbles in Reston. Daily, $6 – $8 per kid, little ones may cost less. Moonbounce and gym also open Tuesdays 3:00 – 5:15pm, and Wednesdays 11:45am – 1:45pm.