Carolyn has been out of sorts the past few days because I think her molars are giving her trouble. She's been hypersensitive (if you couldn't tell from our post yesterday) - hardly eating - and has been running a low grade fever. Since the other two are fine, I'm blaming it on her teeth. Sometimes it can be so difficult to figure out why they are fussy.
In my book, when all else fails, it's teething.
Even though the little voice in my head said "stay home" I
So, I went to the gym. Intuition be damned.
Getting to the gym is a lot easier now than it was the first time I went. Although it's a major cardio workout just getting me and the babies fed, dressed, with our appropriate bags packed and out of the house ... before noon.
Today, I arrived at the gym at 9:10. I unloaded the babies from their stroller. William and Elizabeth take off running, exploring, having fun. Not surprisingly, Carolyn in her sensitive state, is holding on to the stroller. I pick her up and take her to play in the little kitchen. After about 10 minutes of getting her acclimated to the environment and talking with the five counselors at Kid Kamp (watching over 10 kids), I sense that I am in a good position to make my departure without anyone
While all three are looking the other way - I run for the door. I don't stop running until I get upstairs in the gym and settled on a stationary bicycle. I put on my headset, blast my Disco tunes, and start pedaling. No more than five minutes pass and I think I hear them calling my name over the PA system.
My initial confusion at hearing my name in this huge gym - is instantly replaced with dread. A host of horrible things that have just happened to one, or all three of my babies, go racing through my mind.
I run down the stairs and in to Kid Kamp. Carolyn is standing in the middle of the room screaming. Tears streaming down her face. There is a counselor standing two feet away who gives me a look and says "She's upset."
Yeah. Do you think?
After scooping her up, giving her blankie, and calming her down ... I ask the counselor what happened. "Well, she realized that you weren't here, and she started to cry."
Sure, I understand that. I use to babysit ... I remember how little kids would get upset when their parents left. But, I also would try and engage the child ... you know ... get their mind off of it. If all else failed, I would pick them up and hold them. I wasn't judging the counselors at Kid Kamp. I was just thinking I would have handled the situation a little differently. That's all.
A few minutes pass and Carolyn wants to get down. She smiles at me and runs off to play near the little kitchen area. I spot William and Elizabeth having a grand time and I stand there for a moment debating if I should just leave. My intuition is saying pack up and go home. But ... gosh, I'd like to do something that at least resembles a workout.
I run out of Kid Kamp, up the stairs and settle for a treadmill because all of the stationary bicycles have now been taken by other riders. I put my headset back on ... crank up my Disco tunes ... and start walking. Five minutes later, I hear my name on the PA system.
My mind starts racing again.
I hop off the treadmill, run down the stairs and in to Kid Kamp where I see the counselor, holding a crying William. "He got pushed by a little boy and he bit his tongue." I can see in his mouth, and barely visible is a spot of blood. I take him from the counselor, give him a sip of my water ... and seconds later, he struggles to get down.
Once again I think back to my days of babysitting, where a child might hurt themself. Did I instantly pick up the phone and tell the parents that they needed to come home, or did I make an assessment on the severity of the situation - the child's demeanor - and go with my gut? I wasn't judging the counselors at Kid Kamp. I was just thinking I would have handled this situation a little differently, too. That's all.
Carolyn is engaged doing something. Elizabeth is engaged doing something. William takes off running away from me. I stand there for another moment debating if I dare leave again. My intuition is saying pack up and go home. But ... gosh, it would be nice if I could at least break in to a little bit of a sweat, first. I tell the counselor at the front that I will be back in no more than 20 minutes.
For the third time, I run out of the door and up the stairs. All of the bikes, treadmills and ellipse machines have been taken. I run back down stairs and decide I'll lift weights, instead. I know time is of the essence, so I quickly jump on the hamstring machine. Instantly, I realize that my legs won't reach. I get up, move the chair back to a different position and sit down. Now, it's too close. I stand and try again. I sit back down and feel comfortable. I set the weight amount to lift ... and press 1, 2, 3, 4 .... and then I hear my name on the PA system.
No, I'm not making this up.
I walk back in to Kid Kamp to see what's going on. They smile when they see me and say "We have a poopy diaper."
Grabbing the diaper bag and supplies, I go back in to one of the changing rooms to inspect the poop, which is so negligible, it doesn't even require a fresh diaper. I pluck out the poop pellet, do a quick wipe, and all is well. (It always drives Charlie nuts when I do this - but really. The diaper is clean, minus this little poopette that is easily removable. What's the big deal?)
It's the policy at Kid Kamp not to change diapers, which is fine by me. At home, I try to change dirty diapers as quickly as I can. But, I don't drop EVERYTHING that I am doing to change a dirty diaper, unless it is a complete blow-out. If it happens while I'm cooking dinner, I'll finish cutting my vegetables - or whatever, give the pooper an opportunity to finish their business, and then change the diaper. If I'm out for a walk or driving, I don't pull the stroller or car, to the side of the road, unload the baby and change them on the spot. I wait until I get home. Sometimes 15 or 20 minutes might lapse. Maybe 30. But, there's never any harm done.
Maybe it's because I change a lot of diapers in my current job as a triplet mother. Maybe it's because I'm somewhat immune to the potency of a poopy diaper. Perhaps my telling the counselor that I'd be back in 20 minutes wasn't good enough. Whatever the case, I wasn't judging the counselors at Kid Kamp. I was just thinking I would have handled yet THIS situation a little differently, too.
After being called back in to Kid Kamp for the third time in about 30 minutes, I decided that maybe I should just call it a day. I packed the kids up in their stroller and left. On my way back to the car, I contemplated what had just happened and then I did exactly what I said I wasn't going to do ... I judged the counselors at Kid Kamp.
I judged them really, really hard.
And I've continued to judge them the rest of today ... as I've been stewing over the sweat and elevated heart rate that never came to be.
I realize that these counselors are probably under strict orders by the gym. I'm sure that the gym sets limits on what they can and cannot do, and their job descriptions are well defined. But relying on my own experiences as a paid child care provider, I know that sometimes you have to step in and take care of business. I guess times have changed since I was a babysitter. Now a days, there must be standards for babysitting in a public forum - and these standards have to be very black and white.
But that begs the question ... do we honestly live in a world where if a babysitter picks up and holds a child because they are crying, that would be considered wrong? Or, is it considered such a tremendous liability that if a child gets knocked down, the parents must be immediatley notified?? Are they afraid I'd sue them if our child was in a poopy diaper for more than 15 minutes???
Did these counselors actually think they were doing the right thing by calling me down to Kid Kamp every 5-minutes? Am I that hard pressed for some "me" time that I am completely blind to how good these babysitters actually are?? Maybe my expectations are too high. Or, maybe I just really would have liked to have worked out for 15 minutes, consecutively.
Maybe I need to un-enroll our kids and use the $30.00 a month that we're spending on Kid Kamp, for a babysitter to come to our home when I go to the gym. But ... then again, I really like the idea of taking the kids to a different environment and letting them play outside of the house now and again. I think it's good for them.
When I called to
He is a good guy. But really. It's no wonder I can't wear a bathing suit without a sarong.