Thursday, December 16, 2010

Danger: Tunnel Approaching

It happened in preschool.
My first disastrous boo-boo.
Complete with some stitches.

Children's playthings are so safe these days. Everything is made of plastic. With rounded edges and, except for the occasional "made in China" disaster, non-toxic paint. Warnings are stuck all over baby equipment. And age restrictions can always be found on the front of the box.

Toy makers weren't quite so safety-conscious back in the day. Metal was not taboo. In fact, our preschool had a big yellow plastic tunnel in the playroom. A big yellow plastic tunnel with a metal rim around the edges. I loved running around the room and ducking to crawl through the tunnel. Often, I giggled with other kids as we chased each other around the room and through the large yellow tube.

I'm sure that tunnel had been used for years without incident.
But, as I mentioned a couple days ago, I am a klutz. Even at the tender age of three, I was a hopeless mess of boo-boos and bruises. And, coordinated as I was, I managed to run my face right into the metal edge of that yellow tunnel. I bounced right off and landed - splat - on my back. Blood was gushing from the bridge of my nose.

I don't remember much from that day (I was three, after all), but I know my dad was called at work. The teachers laid me down on a stack of folding tables, holding towels or tissues to my nose. I'm pretty sure I was screaming and crying. My Daddy arrived quickly and took me to the doctor. I ended up with some stitches and a genuine fear of that cruel yellow tunnel.

I still have a scar to show for it.

I am happy that toys (and car seats, and high chairs, and cribs...) have become safer since I was Amelia's age. But the next time you are thinking about safety for your young child, just remember: with every safety improvement, there were probably a few kids who suffered. Do you have a nice, soft, collapsible tent/tunnel for your child to run through? Well, you can thank me - and the scar on my nose - for that one.

Linked up to Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop again today!


SJ said...Best Blogger Tips

I shouldn't laugh but I would be the child that managed to dislocate my hand on the netting or strap of the safety tunnel.

As much as they try to make everything as safe as it can be there's always one (and I'm tossing up between you, my son and myself here) that will inadvertently crash, bang, wallop, break or dislocate something :P

Dolli-Mama said...Best Blogger Tips

Wow! I remember being little and looking at different play grounds thinking "is this safe?" Some of the metal equipment looked downright Medieval, and was cooking in the sun all day. But I would always dismiss my fears, thinking, "It's a playground made for kids, of course it's safe!"

If only I knew then what I know now. :)

That's a great story!

Funkidivagirl said...Best Blogger Tips

Yes, thank God for safer toys now, but honestly some kids are just accident-prone, even with safe toys. Those are the kids who would hurt themselves with a teddy bear.

Melissa said...Best Blogger Tips

I am pretty sure that with my daughter nothing can ever be considered "safe." Not even being held in her own moms arms when she was a baby. Still 15 years later she hurts herself ALL.THE.TIME!

JDaniel4's Mom said...Best Blogger Tips

Things have definitely gotten better. I thank both you and your nose.

MrsJenB said...Best Blogger Tips

It amazes me that I lived through my childhood - Dad took us to the playground every day and I fell, like, every day. I'm a huge klutz, too!

Gayatri said...Best Blogger Tips

Reiterating the feelings of the previous comment, it really amazes me that I lived through my childhood too.

There are still such playground equipment available. One of them is a trampoline without a mesh. My toddler daughter fell on the rim of such a trampoline and broke her also punched a hole from the inside of her mouth to the outside..when the tooth dug into the flesh around.
Painful day..for her and us!

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