By: Kristen Clifford
Well, I would like to crawl under a rock and pretend that what happened last Wednesday didn’t, but I can’t. The day started off like any other, Grace doesn’t have school on Wednesdays so we spent the day at home cleaning and catching up on laundry.
My husband was at work. Grace and I were in her room putting away laundry. The twins were in our living room, which is gated off and baby proofed, or so I thought. Grace and I were upstairs, maybe two minutes. Next thing I heard was footsteps in our kitchen, which is supposed to be gated off from our living room. I ran down the stairs and literally jumped over our couch. I don’t think I could do that again if I tried, but my adrenaline was pumping.
Not only had the twins broken through our gate, but they had escaped into the kitchen and gotten the slider open. In the matter of minutes my 19-month-old twins had figured out a gate and figured out how to open the slider. I ran outside to find the babies at the bottom of our steps. My heart dropped. Not only did the babies escape, but they let our dog, Lily, out as well. All I saw was a black streak as our dog took off down our very busy street. I yelled after her, but she just kept running.
I lead the babies back into the house put them in their cribs, where they couldn’t escape and Grace and I headed back outside to try to get the dog. She was no where to be found. I won’t lie I was freaking out! I was crying and called my husband in a panic. I don’t know why I called him, he was more than an hour away at work and there really was nothing he could do to help me.
Grace and I came back into the house, I brought all the kids out to the car and buckled them in. I decided to try to drive around looking for our dog. I thought it was a lost cause at this point as it had been more than 30 minutes at least by the time I stopped shaking and got everyone buckled into their car seats. We live on a very busy main street and our dog is a runner, I had no clue where she would be at this point. I drove down the first side street driving slowly with my hazard lights on calling her name, nothing. I turned around at the end of the street and saw a black dog dart in front of a car.
My heart dropped, it was Lily. Thankfully the car missed her, but she kept running. I pulled into the driveway next to the yard she was in. She saw me and looked like she was going to take off running again. I asked if she wanted to go for a ride and she hopped into the car.
My heart was beating so fast. I couldn’t believe I had actually found her. Then I started to think about all the “what ifs.” What if I hadn’t heard them in the kitchen and the babies had gotten into the street? What if the babies had been hurt? What if we didn’t find our dog? What if she had been hurt?
I still get sick to my stomach thinking about what could have happened that day. That night I came home and installed a new gate in our living room, got a child-proof lock for our slider, and ordered a gate for our porch.
I am very thankful that no one was hurt that day and I know there were precautions I could have taken to prevent it from happening, but the past is the past, and I need to move on, and learn from my experience. I would like to keep my mistakes to myself, pretend they never happened, but I can only hope that someone can learn from my mistakes.
Two days after this incident Emma climbed out of her crib for the first time. Last week was not such a good week for this Mommy. I think the terrible two’s may be coming early and twice as hard in my house.