This is an incredibly tangential approach to the Unplug Your Kids Projects theme of the week - wax. I'm using the theme as a springboard for 'fessing up about something truly horrible that happened to us the other day in the hope of reminding everyone about the dangers of drowning! (and we were very Unplugged at the time, considering we were on the beach).
Last week at the beach Asher and his friends were getting water in their buckets and coming up and tipping it on the sand, and Asher kept going into the water a bit further in each time. He is usually pretty safe and I was up the top of the beach watching, knowing I really should take my sneakers off, roll up my jeans and head down to the edge of the water. I knew I needed to be close to him to remind him not to go deeper than his knees and to fish him out if he fell over but I really didn't want to get all sandy and wet. While I was working myself up to removing shoes I was standing watching Asher, and my friend were sitting on the warm sand suggesting that he would be fine and I just sit down. As I was watching though, he did go under, he was quite deep and he couldn't keep his head above the water. I RAN down there and waded right in and fished him out, scooping him up under his belly to help the water out of his lungs. He coughed and gurgled a bit and was a bit shaken, so I stood him on the edge of the sand and asked him to cough the water up and spit it out. I was shaking but being as outwardly calm as I could manage so as not to freak Asher out any further. Once we went up the beach he was quite content to sit on the sand playing while I chastised myself and then peeled most of my clothes off (thankfully the aforementioned friends were able to clothe me - M gave me her towel to wear around my waist and K took her singlet off for me).
I'm normally so hyper-vigilant about burns*, water and cars (being the things that are statistically most likely to do harm to my kid) and I feel so bad about it but I've certainly learned my lesson (lots of rescue remedy yesterday afternoon helped!). Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in 0-4 age bracket in Australia, and I am SO glad I was watching him so carefully.
Now, what does this have to do with wax? I did tell you it was a tenuous connection didn't I? Well, after the event I sat down and decided to make a plan to ensure that nothing like this happened again. I started off by thinking about why I didn't just go down to the edge of the water and the excuses I came up with were pretty pathetic. I realised that if I had been wearing a skirt and thongs (flip-flops for the North Americans!) I wouldn't have hesitated. Why wasn't I wearing a skirt? I hadn't shaved my legs! (and I don't have many skirts). So I made a plan to get my legs waxed and shop for a few more skirts or dresses. The leg-wax part of the plan went ahead and the skirt buying part is still to come.
* my father is a paediatric surgeon and burns specialist and I've grown up with a lot of very scary stories about burns and scalds. I can't help having a high level of anxiety!