Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Why You Shouldn't Leave Your Toddler and Your Infant Unattended

I was having a really rough day yesterday. I hadn’t slept well during the night and everything was going wrong. I really tried hard to make the best of things, but was unsuccessful- both kids kept screaming and whining, etc.
So, for some reason I though it would be ok for me to go to the bathroom and leave the kids in the living room together. My son, who is six months old, weighs over 21 lbs now, so I didn’t think my daughter, who is a little over two years old, could do too much damage. I was proven to be very wrong.
When I came back from the bathroom, I saw a balled up piece of something on the floor by my baby, covered in drool. I picked it up and inspected it- it was a fridge magnet my daughter had given my son, one of the advertising ones they have on the phone books. It was completely soaked. And, to my dismay, there was a piece missing.
The culprit

I immediately got on the phone. First, I called the pediatrician. After half an hour (!!!) on hold, the nurse told me she wasn’t sure what to think and that she would prefer it if I called poison control. So I called poison control. The lady on the phone was not concerned about the toxicity of the material, but suggested we have an x-ray taken of E.’s stomach because ingested magnets can cause an intestinal block. She advised me to call my pediatrician. So, I called the pediatrician again. After being on hold for ONE HOUR (!!!!!!!!), I gave up and hung up the phone. When I tried calling back, I got an answering machine saying that they had gone to lunch. Which in turn meant that I had been on hold, they had gone to lunch and nobody had bothered to tell me. I was so angry! Finally, after their lunch break (I didn’t have one because I was on the phone for over 1 ½ hours) I spoke to a nurse who asked me to come in so the doctor could take a look.
We went to the doctor; she looked at my son and at the magnet-remains, and decided that it would probably just pass through his system. I was so relieved! I really didn’t want my baby to have to be exposed to radiation just yet.
So, while all ended well, it could have been much worse. My day was ruined, but my baby was fine. The lesson I have learned: I will be taking one child to the bathroom with me again from now on…

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