Thursday, July 7, 2016

Keeping up with Cael

It seemed like a harmless venture.
Cael — who is 2 and 1/2 — wanted to check out the slide on the other side of the new Ivory Park.
He could see it from the splash pad and headed in that direction while his sisters and I were playing in the fountains.
He went south so I did too.
(First of all, Mia, his 5-year-old sister, tried to go with him and hold his hand but he was having none of her direction. He fussed at her and so I went along to keep the peace.)
It was kind of a trek but it looked like a fun playset with a slide and climbing features.
I had kicked off my flip-flops so I could enjoy the cool grass with my toes but I hadn't realized the wood chips covering the ground around the playtoy were not feet-friendly.
They hurt to walk on and I quickly retreated to the pavilion cement pad.
Cael started climbing with Mia.
She found a kind of plastic seat thing that Cael wanted to be on as well.
He couldn't reach it so I tried to come over to help.
"Ow, ow!!"
I retreated again. Mind over painful matter didn't work.
So Cael began to climb up a ladder made of metal rungs and rubber hoses.
He was successful although it was pretty challenging for him.
I looked at him standing with Mia about 10 feet off the ground.
Oh dear.
There was no simple way back down, no slippery slide or climbing wall or steps.
I was going to have to go get him.
Because I love him and didn't want him to die, I walked back over, wincing at each step. The chips bit into my tender feet with no mercy. However, I didn't feel I had a choice.
I made it to the tower they were on but I couldn't reach Cael.
He was too high up and he wanted down.
I tried standing on one of the metal rungs but I couldn't get a good hold of him with one hand. He waited, assuming grandma would save him.
I didn't know what to do. I couldn't go for help. No one else was around. I didn't see that this was going to end well.
He thought I was getting him so he started down. The best plan I had was to try and catch him as he fell.
It was really scary.
He stretched his little legs and feet out and then grabbed hold. Mia was cheerleading. I was sweating and praying.
He worked and wiggled and made it perilously from rung to rung and to the other side without falling through.
He was all proud of himself and fine in the end.
I'm rung out.

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