Thursday, November 19, 2009

Please State Your Emergency...

Last week, Joel was working late so Brady and I were home alone. He was being a crab this particular evening, so against my better judgment, I let him play with our phone. The beeps of the buttons seemed to please him for a few minutes, and I was just glad something was distracting him. The kid is really into phones right now – so there he was, just wandering around, pushing buttons and holding it to his ear…

After I was able to pry the phone away from Brady and in the midst of feeding him supper, I heard a knock at our door. Then the doorbell rang. Now, about twelve different scenarios ran through my head as I stood to go to the door. It was probably a neighbor. Or maybe my parents….but they always call. It could be a motorist with a broken down vehicle – but that was unlikely. If you know where our new house is located, you know there is NO traffic whatsoever that would lead to a motorist knocking on my front door. Then the “mom” instinct kicked in as I rounded the corner….it’s probably fine, but what if it’s some weirdo? Do I answer the door? I don’t want to be paranoid, but it’s better safe than sorry….I have a son to think about, and Joel isn’t home. It’s dark with no street lights, and we are surrounded by woods. My mind flashed to the garage and I reassured myself the door was down.

I could see the person at the door was a man dressed all in black with a flashlight. My “mom” instinct cranked up a notch. I got closer to the door but had resolved I wouldn’t open it until I was sure it was safe and I recognized the person outside. But as I got closer, I saw a shiny flash on this man’s shirt: it was a badge. I quickly saw it was a police officer at the door and I again started racing through the thoughts: was Joel hurt? Did someone call the cops on us? Brady was screaming loudly earlier – perhaps they thought it was domestic disturbance? But then again, we are pretty remote so the chance of anyone hearing his screams was minimal…

I opened the door and the officer greeted me politely and asked if someone had called 9-1-1. I was puzzled and said no, definitely not (you can imagine where this is going by now…). Then my eyes got really big as I realized what must have happened. I told the officer, “Oh my gosh, my 1-year-old son had the phone earlier…he must have managed to dial 9-1-1!” He was a very nice young man and simply said as long as everyone was ok, it wasn’t a big deal. I said good night, closed the door, and walked back to my son, who was quiet during this whole incident and who was now smiling mischievously in his high chair, as if he knew what he’d just done and was thinking, “Ha ha, gotcha mom!”

They always say not to let kids play with phones: they could accidentally call someone, even 9-1-1! I never thought Brady would actually manage to accomplish that task, but this certainly reminded me of one thing: never underestimate the abilities of a curious toddler.

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