Every Saturday I bring you a parenting mistake my husband and I have made. Please have a laugh or cry at our expense — we really are good parents, I swear.
The scenario: Nora has a killer cold. She can barely breathe through her little nose and it’s almost bedtime. Since modern science has failed to provide us with a safe medicine to relieve cold symptoms in children, I haul the humidifier upstairs, fill it with water, add a pinch of salt and plug it into a socket in her room. By the time I tuck her in, the air in her room is jungle-like, allowing her to breathe. She settles down to sleep. I lay in bed reading a magazine for twenty minutes when I am startled by the shriek of the smoke detector. For perhaps the twentieth time, I have set up the humidifier without remembering to disable the smoke alarm. I run to her bedroom, vault onto her changing table, snatch down the smoke alarm and whack it into silence. Nora is now crying hysterically, making her congestion worse with every sob.