Babygate and Other Obstructions
We've been gradually child-proofing our living spaces as Nathan becomes more mobile, though his skills are developing somewhat faster than the implementation of our safety measures. Last week Jack rearranged the living room furniture to create a more open play area with better visibility and fewer exposed electrical cords and Sunday we installed a couple of new baby gates to give the nugget freer range to explore. It also gives us a break from constantly retrieving him from places he really shouldn't be.
The downside to all of this constructive activity is that it has utterly confused my poor mother. Every time she walks into the living room, she just sort of loses momentum and stands forlornly trying to figure out where she is and where it was she was trying to go. She had fallen into the habit of sitting in the same place most of the time and I'm sure she'll eventually get comfortable with the new set up, but it's probably going to take another week or two.
The baby gates just further confuse and constrict her movements around the house. Because she has so much trouble expressing herself, we're just going to have to remember to be really alert to her movements and desires. If I ask her if she'd like me to move one of the gates, she is able to say yes or no, but she won't initiate the request on her own. Jack and I and the kids are able to simply step over the gates, so we'll have to especially be careful not to go downstairs and leave her and the dog stranded in the living room!
With any luck, we'll be able to "reset" my mom's memory of the living room next weekend, when we take a quick trip to Ohio for my grandmother's birthday. I'm a little worried how the stress and fatigue of travel will affect my mom, but she really did seem so much better for a few days after our trip to Columbus last month. The last two weeks have been really rough, so I'm hoping a change of scene will do her some good.
The other obstruction I had in mind when I wrote the title to this entry has to do with a new running-related pet peeve that would never have hit my radar before Nathan showed up on the scene...also something that would never have been an issue in Central Park. People who park their cars at the end of their driveways so that they obstruct the sidewalk. How hard is it to drive just ten feet further?? Much of my running these days winds along suburban thoroughfares and this selfish, stupid practice means that I either have to run in the road with the babyjogger or swerve down one driveway into the road around the offending car and then back up the next driveway. If it was just me on foot, I probably wouldn't even notice it, but it makes it impossible to keep an even pace while maneuvering my big, baby-carrying contraption along a narrow sidewalk. And coming as it does during my desperately coveted ME time, it pisses me off on a daily basis.