Home » Our Biggest Parenting Fail Yet

Our Biggest Parenting Fail Yet

We’re getting out-of-town for a few days and returning to nearly a week’s worth of fun stuff for Mac’s birthday.  So I’m in laundry, cleaning, list-making hell.

But last early last evening, I felt like I had things kinda’ sorta’ under control.  And I didn’t feel exhausted or miserably uncomfortable.  So instead of suggesting Chris take Mac to the playground after his run, I decided I’d take Mac back to the Park myself.

The plan was for Chris to get a head start, do his run and then he would meet us so we could take a long walk.  (And trust me, after the 3 pieces of bread slathered with nearly a stick of butter I consumed yesterday afternoon, I needed a long walk).

Lately, Mac has been impatient to get out of the stroller pretty quickly on our walks.  So we’ve been trying a new tactic where we let him do some walking and running first, then put him in the stroller so we can bird for a while, and then we give him time to walk and play again at the end of the walk.

So far it’s been working.

For this reason, when I got just inside the Park, I promptly removed Mac from the stroller.

Apparently inspired by all the other runners in the Park, he began his own adorable little run, all the while shouting “Run!”

We were doing pretty well making a fairly straight course to the Boat Lake, where we typically meet up with Chris after his run.

Keep running, kid.  That’s the way.  Make sure you sleep really well tonight!

I was busy having a little fantasy about how maybe next year or the year after, Mac and I could run together.  Then I remembered running is hard. . .So I starting dreaming of Chris and Mac running together.  Perhaps even running a 5K.  I envisioned Mac being one of the youngest runners, screaming encouragements of “RUN!  RUN!” at the other participants, his gigantic race bib blowing in the breeze.  My heart was filling with joy.  All those months I worried his heart would be healthy and strong. . .and here he was running effortlessly. . .without a care. . .

My idyllic visions were interrupted by the sound of Chris swooping in behind us, grabbing Mac and both of them screaming in some kinda’ grunting man-speak they do at one another. . .

We were either behind or Chris ran really fast, because he met up with use sooner than expected.

Great.  Don’t mind me while I grab my binoculars. . .

Daddy can keep an eye on this little monkey for a bit. . . 

Clearly I could use a break.  I was just having delusions about RUNNING for chrissakes!  

Chris and Mac were zigzagging about touching trees and leaves while I pushed the empty stroller and scanned for birds.

As we approached the east side of the Lake, Mac was a few steps ahead but doing a pretty nice job staying on the path.  At some point, Chris ended up a few steps behind me.

We were approaching the part of the Lake that doesn’t have a short stone wall around it.  For about 1/4 of the Lake’s shore, the grass is level right up to the Lake’s small concrete curb.

Hours before, Mac and I were at the same spot.  And Mac fooled around on nearly tip toes at the edge of the Lake, failing to heed my repeated warnings to PLEASE GET BACK FROM THE EDGE.  On the third ignored warning, I physically removed him from area and made him get back in the stroller.

Of course, Chris wasn’t aware of this.

But I knew. . .the kid clearly has no fear of the edge and no respect for authority.

I was holding my breath hoping Mac might just race ahead towards the boardwalk.

He made one stumbling approach toward the water’s edge.  At which point, both Chris and I shouted a warning.

Chris was still a few steps behind me.

Mac halted at the edge of the Lake.

Wait for it Deni.  Wait.  Chris is going to come running past you any second and scoop up the kid.  

Mac teetered.

Chris is coming.  I know he’s coming.  He thinks that Lake is a cesspool.  There’s no way he’s risking the kid falling in.  

“Mac!” I shout.

Chris is seeing this isn’t he?  

“Mackinley!” I shout again as it’s starting to register Chris is either somehow unaware of Mac’s position or expects me to do something about it.

And no sooner had my hands left the stroller handle until. . .


This did garner a reaction from Chris who rapidly fished the kid out of the 4 inch-deep disgusting water.

Chris plopped the soaking wet screaming kid down in front of me.


“I’m sorry,” I said, “I thought you were watching him and going to get him.”

“I was doing my lunges.”  Chris said, “I though you were watching him.”

We both were “watching” him alright. . .watching him fall into a disgusting puddle full of trash, duck crap, and gigantic snapping turtles.

I have to admit, I was a little pissed about the whole “I was doing my lunges” excuse.  I felt like I really had done an awful lot that day and would it have been so bad to give me a break from wrestling with the kid for just a few minutes – lunges be damned?

Anyway, I started to strip off Mac’s FLEECE pullover and FLEECE pants.

I had no idea how much water fleece holds.

Chris is kinda’ just standing there watching me wring out the sopping wet clothing.

“What’s your problem?”  I snipped at him.  “You don’t want to touch him do you?  Because he was in that water?”

“You’re right.  It’s gross.”  Chris replied.

Fortunately for Chris some woman with a couple dogs walked past us, otherwise I probably would have tried to drown HIM.

I stripped Mac down to his very wet diaper and wrapped him in Chris’ fleece for the ride home.


Despite Chris’ concerns that Mac needs 12 antibiotics and a seven day quarantine, everything seems fine.

Will I EVER again assume Chris is watching Mac when we are both together?  No.

Which I’m sure will just lead to Chris accusing me of not trusting him and being paranoid and over-bearing.  . .

And to that I’ll answer, was it YOU cleaning the duckweed and goose shit off this kid’s sneakers the last time?

To Chris’ credit, he did give the kid a bath when we got home. . .Although, I’m sad to say he still smells a little musty. . .I’m hoping the chlorine at the hotel pool will fix that right up. . .







8 Responses to “Our Biggest Parenting Fail Yet”

  1. Meghan says:

    haha! I swear this will happen to us. Which is why whenever i leave the room or outdoor space we’re in and know my eyes will be off avery, i ask vinay ‘you got him?’ and trust me, he’s very annoyed i always do it… but I just know that if i didn’t do that, this would totally happen… except at our house there are no sespools of water… it would be something worse like avery climbing over the chain link fence around the yard(yes, he can do this) and running into the main road and getting smashed by a car…scary stuff!
    Meghan recently posted…J.M.M.Y Run 5KMy Profile

  2. Jennifer says:

    If it makes you feel any better I let my daughter plunge off the bed this morning. This normally wouldn’t be anything to worry too much about, but being just two weeks post surgery on her hip I had a minor heart attack. And to make it even worse I was sitting RIGHT THERE!! Within arms reach. I can’t even blame the husband other than to accuse him of not being at home.
    She did one of those Kamikaze dive bombs right over the edge. Lucky for me she landed on everything except her bad leg. No blood or tears so I think we are o.k.
    I am afraid to look in the mirror. Pretty sure there are more gray hairs :-p
    Jennifer recently posted…Longing to BloomMy Profile

  3. That’s your biggest fail? You’re doing awesome 😉

    And I love the crying wet photo. Good times.
    Anita @ Losing Austin recently posted…Meet Me! (A Video Intro)My Profile

  4. This, I will never, ever have to worry about. Hubs is SUCH a helicopter parent and SO paranoid about, well, everything – that I know when he’s with the girls he is constantly watching them and ready to jump at a blip of a second to prevent them from falling into something filthy. Unfortunately, this makes him yell at them a lot for such transgressions as sitting on the ground and playing in dirt. I have to yell at him to back off sometimes.

    it’s never perfect, is it?
    The Next Step recently posted…Wordless Wednesday: Giving BackMy Profile

  5. Dani Ryan says:

    I’m glad you were pissed about the lunges. Because I was pissed about the lunges. 🙂

    I’m totally the helicopter parent over here (in case you haven’t noticed), but I try SO HARD not to be when we’re out. And then this kind of stuff happens. So, so brutal.

    Enjoy your vacay!!!! Can’t wait for the blog fodder is give you (but so disappointed you won’t be drinking in the bathroom like that one trip you took last year!)!!!
    Dani Ryan recently posted…Why my family stopped going to barbequesMy Profile

  6. Shay says:

    But his little pictures are so cute–duckweed and goose shit and all!!
    Shay recently posted…Poop Wars: A Totally (Not) Inspirational Mother’s Day StoryMy Profile

  7. I love that you had the presence of mind to take pictures. I never would have done that. I just get so caught up in the moment that I fail to record it for the enjoyment of family and friends. When my daughter was about two, she got ahold (ok I gave it to her) of a jar of cinnamon. I was cooking at the counter and she was behind me in the kitchen. She got that freakin’ bottle open and shook a cinnamon trail all over the floor. On top of that, she was covered head-to-toe in cinnamon. She looked like an Oompa Loompa. But instead of snapping a picture, I rushed into the bathroom to wash her off. Now every time I tell that story, I hear, “Did you take a picture?” GAARGH! Man, I wish I had!
    Maria Bellos Fisher of Hereditary Insanity recently posted…Anger has its priceMy Profile

    • admin says:

      “She looked like an Oompa Loompa. . .” That cracked me up! Too funny!

      Thank you so much for commenting. I’m terribly sorry I didn’t reply sooner. May is such a busy month for us. . .I’m STILL catching up!