They say that you learn something new every day.
On Tuesday I learned that there is no parenting book in the world that prepares you for the sheer terror you feel when your 15-month-old takes a header down the stairs.
My heart rate sped up just typing that sentence.
In that instant, as I saw N lose his balance, tip head first down the (thankfully carpeted) stairs, and hit every step as he log-rolled down, I forgot everything I’d ever been taught about staying calm in a crisis.
I screamed and cried and screamed some more. I’m sure I scared both the dog and the baby (and likely Husband, who was just about to get in the shower). And I ran like hell down the stairs to pick N up and start feeling for broken bones.
Luckily, Husband was right behind me, because my shaky hands and tear-filled eyes were not the most effective at that point.
Now, more than 48 hours later, N is fine. Hell, he was fine less than an hour later, albeit with a Harry Potter-esque scratch on his forehead.
I, however, am still feeling the mom guilt of having that fall happen on my watch. I felt helpless and terrified and panicky. And if I think about it too much, I still feel all of those things.
I was a little worried that N would be scared of the stairs from here on out – I know I’m scared of him on the stairs. But he’s not. In fact, he wants to come down them like a big boy now, holding hands with someone and walking down like a little adult.
Something tells me that there will be more tumbles in our future. I just hope my heart can handle it.