Saturday, February 6, 2010

Out of Time

As I yelled about shared earlier this week, we are going into production on our short film. I'm officially, as of yesterday, damn busy.

And as I shared last week, the boy is moving faster now - impossibly fast. So when he is awake I'm watching him intently as he swims around on the floor like a pinball in search of the most points. Or in the kitchen he's doing laps under my feet as I do dishes and wish I am a fly with extra eyeballs.  Or mostly I've resorted to wearing him in the Ergo if I want to be in any room that he can't be scooting around in (most of them). So as of last week, I'm officially damn busy.

The boy on the move really presents alot of problems. And like everything else in parenthood when first presented with it, it seems pretty unsolvable and overwhelming in a throat-closing way. Okay now - Baby gates? Baby proofing? Little latches and plug covers and drape cord management systems? Most moms I know around here hire a professional to come in and do this thing and it's done, just done. So I imagine that these families fall asleep with sweet smiles and have good nurturing dreams and awake refreshed and happy to face another safe day filled with happy baby playing sounds. Unlike me with the soundtrack of my grinding teeth through the night. Awake to a new day of tiny boy chasing that comes with worry and wonder and discovery of the dastardly danger that lurks around every sharp corner.

you: Call the professional baby proofer.
me:  Harumph, this is not really in my budget right now.
you: Go to Target.
me: Harumph.

I mean I will and I am but I just hate to buy all of these plastic crap, plastic gates or other plastic things that require installing them. And oh crap, who's going to install them? The other day I put dog and boy into the car to go to the mountain and as I buckled BHB into the car seat I heard myself think, 'Whew, at least he's safe'. In a car. In Los Angeles. This can't be good.

Friends, what the hell do we do with the ficas tree that he constantly wants to shove his little baby hands into or eat the leaves with his little baby mouth? I LOVE this tree. I don't want to put it outside. Sure we live in California and sure it will probably be just fine but but but! I don't wanna! Perhaps this tree represents my last shred of individuality, the last little bastion of me, the sappy ass adult who wants a pretty damn tree in the room. I know, I know, it's going.

This lil play pen is the only true solution, we call it the baby hot tub.

As you can see he looks pretty damn happy in it, and thank god he is. Of course I read the RIE parenting books and they make me feel like a rotten terrible person because I haven't created the safe room that he can just be in. And the hot tub is too small.

But for now it's the best solution for the occasional trip to the bathroom.

Or the 14 minutes of dishes until we can strap him into the high chair where he'll be safe until we can strap him into the carseat where he will be safe until I can strap him into the stroller and push him up a hill until we can then strap him into...the shopping cart and then I will strap him onto my chest to walk to to the car and then. Thank god for straps.

Of course we do release him on the floor occasionally and then follow him around going:

 Oh well no honey um let's go this way and opps a cord and nope let's not do that and oh wow look at all of these big books at your level ready to tumble down on your sweet head or the stack of CD's that you really? Are going to pull the middle one out? And holy cats that cool antique tool box is built to hurt a baby have you ever seen anything more lethal oh boy, let's play with these super cool blocks made out of foam but oh man they are made in china? Uh-oh they are painted but sheesh please go ahead and eat these. Please little one, I'm begging you...sit down in one spot and gnaw on these blocks..

Google is going to have a field day with the ad's on this one, so much good crap to sell. Do you have any suggestions? Things that worked for you? A padded room I can borrow?

Yours in the 'whelm,

PS - I love this picture. You can tell he's really enjoying this hike. And that strap looks uber safe too.


  1. I had the same exact problem when mine started moving, and was so overwhelmed with the idea of childproofing a whole house. I picked one room to childproof, set it up with a bunch of toys at his level, gated that room, and we mostly stayed there for a while. That bought me some time to slowly childproof other rooms. I picked the living room b/c it's the biggest & we spend the most time in here, but wherever you spend most of your time is probably your best bet. Good luck!

  2. I childproofed my office and his bedroom. Next up will be the dining room which connects them both. Then it's baby gates to the two adjacent rooms. I work from home! I can't be chasing around The Inquisitive One.

    My pediatrician's advice for baby proofing is to go down on all fours and crawl around the room at their level. Baby proof everything as high as you can reach from there, and you know you'll be good. I spent a great hour crawling around my office, amazed at how many cords I have.

  3. Oh, ugh. I'm so with you on this one. Babyproofing seems like such a colossal pain in the you-know-what, and the alternative is living in a state of constant vigilance and near terror. Equally unappealing to me. I made the effort, once, to baby proof an entire room and stuck a big ole safe baby gate on it. Of course, my kid didn't want to be in the room if I wasn't in it. Bleh. So I ended up moving my desk and chair in there, so I could do work, and it kind of defeated the whole purpose of having a safe room that was SOMEPLACE ELSE, other than where I WAS, thank you very much.

    Love the picture in the baby hot tub - man, he's adorable!!! Good thing they're cute, huh??


  4. As I type this with my 21 month old daughter hanging on me demanding to see BHB "AGAIN, AGAIN, AGAIN!" I am remembering how we kept her older brother in a pen that encompassed the entire family room. He would stand at the edge and wail at us. It was horrible, but we had no choice. He got into everything and was always going for the stairs, etc. His sister couldn't give a damn about the stairs. We have never had to use a gate with her. I, however, still live in fear of either one of them discovering the shredder in the deadly office. Don't go crazy. I still have a toilet seat lock that I never used. I bought one day when I was just losing it and never installed it.

    Lastly, I am so thrilled that you got the money for the project. I donated and was so worried that you wouldn't get there. Good luck and I can't wait to see more updates!

  5. I read the RIE book too and I constantly feel like a jerk but we all do our best with what we have. For us, that means we live in a one bedroom apartment and all space is shared, so clearly dangerous stuff gets moved up or goes bye-bye, we get a bit less precious about the stuff that can't be moved, and we redirect a whole lot. Do we want him to touch the stereo? Not so much. Is there anywhere else for the stereo to live? Also, not so much. We strapped the TV and did the plug things. We make the Dog Whisperer noise when he goes for the cat food. We taught him to get down off the bed. He "helps" me do the dishes from his high chair and is allowed to pull stuff out of the cabinets. And I remain a bit nervous, probably forever.

    XO Carrie

  6. Yeah, it was overwhelming. We baby-proofed. Used a gate or two. Lived to tell the tale. We were lucky. We did not have a climber.

  7. Oh, we LOVE our baby hot tub. For about four months or so, from when she would first go in it until she once again noticed the world beyond its boundaries and demanded to be part of it, it was bliss. BLISS. I'm already mourning that they don't make the equivalent for preschoolers.