I am happy to announce that there is another person out there like me who is hooked on t.v., especially bad 1970’s t.v. In this instance, t.v. may be responsible for a baby’s health and safety!!! A friend of mine, who wishes to remain anonymous recently told me how grateful she is for the afternoon re-runs of retro t.v. shows. My friend, who we will call Sally, is a first time mom whose daughter is just under a year old. Her daughter, who we will call Mabel, is in the early stages of walking. Mabel is no longer a cooing, immobile bundle. She has turned into a mini godzilla, roaring around the house tipping over ottomans and swishing her hands in the dog’s water bowl. This baby wants to get around.
The other day, Sally laid Mabel down for a nap and decided treat herself to lounging on the couch, instead of tending to the household chores- cleaning, laundry, pet care, and all of that other fun stuff. She flipped on the t.v. and decided to channel surf for something boring that would lull her into a much needed nap. She decided on The Waltons. She plumped her pillow and settled in for a break from the day’s activities. Of course, she became totally invested in the show and did not fall asleep. The premise of the episode was that a child of someone the Walton’s knows had “gotten into something in the kitchen” and was now in the hospital. Later in the episode, the Waltons find out the child doesn’t make it.
Sally sat up in horror. She realized that she had not done one bit of baby-proofing in her home. Her kitchen cabinets were laden with all sorts of caustic detergents and sharp objects, and the cabinets were unsecured, just waiting for a curious baby to open them and explore. She was so upset she couldn’t even keep watching the show. She immediately went to the kitchen and started clearing out potential dangers. Then, she came across something awful. At first, she thought it was just an empty milk jug. She grabbed it and took a look, and realized it was a milk jug–full of USED CAT SYRINGES. Sally had once had a cat with feline diabetes who required two insulin shots a day. The used needles piled up in the milk jug, and Sally tucked them away, intending to find out how to properly dispose of them later on. She had a horrifying image in her mind of baby Mabel’s chubby baby hands finding the jug and tossing around materials that belong in a container labeled “Biohazard”. I had a similar incident happen to me for real–I came out of the bathroom to find my son holding a bottle of Tilex that my husband had put back in the ONE cabinet that we didn’t have a latch on. I pretty much had a panic attack.
Later on, when her husband came home, Sally rushed to the store and loaded a cart full of baby-proofing gear. She went home and immediately secured all of her cabinets, quietly thankful that The Waltons saved her baby from eating a bottle of Soft Scrub. And from playing with used cat syringes.
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