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Infant Safetyby Pam Coronado
The baby was crawling toward the end of the boat dock like some kind of super sonic crawling machine and I was frantically running in place as fast as I could in a futile attempt to reach him before he toppled off and disappeared into the deep dark waters below. I woke with a start, looking around in panic. Relief washed over me when I discovered it was only a nightmare and my baby was still sleeping peacefully beside me. Any therapist would tell you my dream was a reflection of the secret doubt I was harboring about my ability to care for my new baby. I'm sure most of you know what I'm talking about.
Whenever he looked at me with his big brown eyes full of love, trust and total vulnerability, I felt the awesome sense of responsibility for his complete wellbeing and safety. I also felt intensely protective...just as nature had intended, I'm sure. That profound sense of protectiveness is an infant's only defense against the world.
Obviously, common sense plays a big part in keeping our precious little ones out of harms way. I often tell parents to treat your baby like you would your purse or lap top computer. I know it sounds simplistic, but much truth lies in this statement. If you wouldn't leave your lap top computer in plain view in the car with the door unlocked, don't do it with your infant. If you wouldn't leave your purse in the shopping cart unattended, don't do it with your infant.
Intuition or instinct is the other valuable tool nature gave us to safeguard our precious ones, yet sadly is a resource often ignored. I don't know how many times I have heard the stories about a mother suddendly turning around just in the nick of time to see her baby about to tumble from a precarious position. Unfortunately, I have heard just as many stories of mothers who ignored their gut feelings only to regret it later, in some cases, forever.
DAYCARE is a tough issue for many working parents these days. For most of us, it is extremely difficult to hand our baby over to a stranger with his packed diaper bag and tears welling up in our eyes, and rightly so. Choosing the right person to care for your baby is a huge task. It's also the first of many crucial decisions you will face as a parent.
Common sense tells us the house strewn about with marbles, small Legos and eight other children may not be the best choice for baby. Research can teach us that this person has been watching children for 15 years and is licensed. Talking to other parents will give us even more insight. Still it is our gut that tells us the most about an individual in question. If everything seems ideal but your gut is telling you something is wrong. It IS! It's always better to be safe than sorry.
We've all seen the chilling stories on the news about the parents getting suspicious about a day care provider only to secretly videotape them and discover their worst fears are true. Even worse are the horror stories about the illegal babysitter kidnapping an infant and disappearing out of the country. The first inkling that something is wrong is an important signal to get your baby away from this person...NOW. Your baby can not tell you the babysitter chokes or shakes them...but your intuition will, all you have to do is listen. Your baby is depending on you.
Pam Coronado is the mother of three school-aged children and a licensed private detective who specializes in cases of missing and abducted children. For more information about Pam, please use this link.
You can visit Pam's site at http://www.pamcoronado.com
or email her at IamPam@earthlink.net
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