Hey everyone, from here on out just refer to me as the SAFETY MOM! I am eager to share with you my passion and knowledge for child safety in order to help protect our precious little ones! Injuries are the number one leading cause of death to children in the United States. However, through education, basic precautions, and increased supervision we can raise awareness about how to decrease the risk of injuries that occur to our precious children and keep them safe. I look forward to contributing each month about safety and injury prevention and hope to provide all of you with peace of mind as it relates to this topic.
I am a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, born and raised there until I married my husband, Greg, and we moved to the Northshore. We just celebrated our eleventh wedding anniversary last week. We were married 8 years before we decided we were finally ready for the next step, B-A-B-Y! Once pregnant, we decided we would wait until the baby was born to find out what we were having. Delivery day came, our doctor announced, “It’s a boy!” and we immediately fell in love as soon as we laid eyes on our prince charming, Cooper. I can laugh about this now, but when Cooper was just 3 months old I found out I was pregnant again! I was in shock and denial; this couldn’t be possible. YIKES!!! Back to back pregnancies, exhaustion from a new baby who never slept, compounded by a pregnancy filled with morning sickness that lasted almost 20 weeks. The pregnancy flew by, thank goodness, and on Easter Sunday (12 months and 5 days after Cooper was born) we heard, “It’s a girl!” and met our sweet princess Camille.
After graduating college, my first real job in the workforce world was with the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals in the Maternal and Child Health Program. My career focus was on unintentional injuries to children, SIDS and safe sleep practices, and the Child Death Review Program. We have all heard the saying, knowledge is power, but too much knowledge about safety and injury equals complete paranoia once you become pregnant and a new mother! I think all new mothers are scared wondering about all the things that could possibly happen to their newborn, but can you just imagine how frightening it was for me since I dealt with safety and injury on a daily basis? I lived and breathed S-A-F-E-T-Y! So here’s an example of how warped my mind became once I got pregnant. At the time, my husband and I had been Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians for over 6 years. I was so nervous, I didn’t trust him or myself to install the car seat for our unborn baby. I made an appointment with the best child passenger safety technician I knew in the state to give me the peace of mind I needed to know it was installed correctly. Never mind the fact that both Greg and I had instructed thousands of new parents, grandparents and caregivers how to properly install a child restraint system. I just lost all faith in our abilities when it came to the safety of our own child! I can laugh about that now, too. The nursery was super-duper baby proofed—baby bed, outlet covers, mounted furniture…it was perfect! However, I’m here to tell you, all babies are different and nothing is ever completely baby proofed! With motherhood, you have to be willing to adapt and learn as you go! Your life will constantly change and you will learn the ropes with your child as he or she grows and develops. Just remember to sit back and enjoy the ride as you grow and learn together!
With a 1- and 2-year-old, my house looks as though a hurricane went through it on most days. We start our day with morning kisses and throw in some tickle time, laughter, lots of dirty dishes and diapers, lots of playing and of course some fighting! Being the CHO (Chief Household Officer) is no doubt a full-time job! You know you are a mom when you look around your house and all the kitchen chairs are moved away from the table, there are no pillow cushions left on the sofa, and the only time you get to sit down and eat an actual meal is when you put yourself in timeout!