When we bought our house, over 5 years ago, I was a tad bit hesitant. Because it has a pool. Pools are dangerous. Especially for children. And I had just heard a story, around the same time that we purchased our house, of a mother who turned her back for ONE MINUTE and her twins drowned. Not a reassuring story to hear when considering becoming the owner of a house with a pool.
I am the mother of 5 children, one of which was an infant at the time we were moving in. The thought of losing one of my children to drowning, it terrified me.
But, we bought the house anyways. We figured that we would always be around to keep an eye on things which would keep the chances of something bad happening lowered.
The first summer went by without a hitch. My youngest was only 5 months old so he wasn’t really getting around much if he wasn’t attached to me or my husband. My other kids were 6, 7 and two 8 y/o. They were decent swimmers but they were old enough to understand the perils of the pool and they knew that going in the backyard unsupervised was a big no-no. They actually listened. Miracle of miracles.
I still had nightmares and horrible visions of finding my children floating in the pool.
But by the next summer, my youngest was now a toddler. And boy, did he toddle. He got into everything and was completely fearless.
He was going through this phase. It included opening the doors and leaving. We remedied that pretty quickly by getting tons of baby gates and rigging a device on the door that made it difficult for him to open. Because holy crap, that kid figured out how to open the front door. Did I mention that he is a genius? 😉
Anyways, we were all outside one bright, warm summer day. The kids were running all over the place. I thought my husband was watching my youngest. He thought our oldest daughter was watching him. And so on down the line. Turns out, no one was watching him.
I panicked because we couldn’t find him. I was running around the house, screaming like a lunatic.
Suddenly I felt nauseous. I had this foreboding feeling in the pit of my stomach. I wondered if anyone had gone to look out by the pool. Why no one thought to look there first? It’s beyond me.
I ran into the back. Probably hysterically screeching out his name. I don’t remember. It is a blur and I was petrified. I remember chanting in my head “please, let him be alright”, over and over.
There he was. All 18 chunky months of him. Sitting on the top step of the pool, most likely holding a toad and gurgling to it.
I spanked him. Over his diaper, of course. In my mind, a spanking is better than drowning. I made it very clear that this was to never happen again. That he had scared his Mommy and Daddy and he had broken a very big rule in our house.
I was relieved. He was OK even though he was crying because he had just been spanked. And holy shit, were we lucky.
Luck is the only difference between me and Miltary Mom. My son was OK. But yesterday afternoon, her son, Bryson, drowned in their pool. He was 2.
I don’t know her. I had never heard of her until I saw a tweet that had been retweeted by one of my twitter friends about praying for her son. And I had to investigate the reason, because I’m a little nosy.
And boy, did I find out…
She is living my nightmare. One that I was so lucky it only stayed in my subconscious and ended in a spank.
My heart and thoughts go out to her and her family. I don’t even want to imagine the horror and the guilt and the pain this family must be going through.
And you people, whether or not you believe this story of Shellie Ross and her son to be true, shut your fucking mouths. Grow up. Get over yourselves.
Regardless of whether or not this story turns out to be false, may none of us ever know the horrible ache and pain that this type of accident causes.
UPDATE: For all you skeptics on this incident, it has been confirmed. That poor, poor woman, who will NEVER, EVER get over this, has lost her child. And I really hope that those of you who tweeted those horrible things, feel like the absolute shit that you were spewing.