Adoption Interview

Adoption Bloggers Interview Project 2012

Thursday, March 26, 2009


It seems we have a little Houdini on our hands. Hannah has finally managed to thwart the child locks on the door knobs. In our old house we had a dutch door on Hannah's room. Kyle turned the bottom door knob around so that the lock was on the outside. This way we were able to keep Hannah in her room during naps and safe at night when she might otherwise be up roaming the house and getting hurt unsupervised. At the apartment none of the bedrooms have locks and even if they did, we did not have the luxury of turning the knob around since it's not our door. So, we put a door knob cover on the inside of Hannah's bedroom door to keep her in her room. She hadn't figured out how to use one yet so we figured this would do the trick of keeping her safe. I was especially concerned about her getting out of her room and then opening the apartment door and going who knows where without us knowing in the middle of the night. This worked for about a week. Then Hannah decided to start playing with the cover and accidentally got one of them off. We found her in our bedroom one morning as a friendly wake up call. We replaced the cover and considered it a fluke. Well, it wasn't a fluke. She became increasingly skilled at removing the door knob cover from the door and getting out. It got to the point that we could not keep her in her room at all. Bedtimes became an even bigger battle than they normally are. We were at our wits end. Then I decided to go down to the Lobby and ask the concierge for some help. I explained the situation and our fears and asked if it would be ok for Kyle to remove the bathroom door knob and switch it with the bedroom door knob in Hannah's room and turn it around the wrong way. I promised we would return them to their correct places once we moved out and would pay for any damage that occurred because of the switching. He said we didn't have to do it. They would have maintenance fix us right up that afternoon! They really do treat their residents nice at this place! Maintenance was at our apartment in less than an hour to do the job. When I opened the apartment door the maintenance man said, "I'm here to lock a kid in their bedroom." I about died I was so embarrassed. What if people really do think we are horrible child abusing parents who lock our child in her room for days at a time?!? Then he cracked a smile and started laughing. I let out a huge sigh of relief. Then Hannah came out from behind my leg and the guy looked mortified. He said, "I didn't know she was there. She's probably going to be scared out of her mind now." I said, "Nah, she's used to being locked in at night!" It ended up not being possible to switch the door knobs because they weren't the same type of knob so he ended up putting a chain lock on the outside of Hannah's door. Now it really does look like we are abusers! It does the trick though. Hannah can only open her door about an inch now. There have been no further escapes and I have been able to rest much easier now knowing that she's not up devising a way to beat the night lock and get out of the apartment.

Though Hannah seems to be sleeping more peacefully when she is actually asleep. There's no more snoring which is awesome. She is still having a really hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. I'm sure some of this is due to the transition to the new apartment, but I'm not sure if that is the whole reason or not. She's been taking Melatonin for awhile now and I was hoping that would do the trick. I think I'd like to increase her dose to see what that does, but I don't want to do that until I'm sure she's settled into a routine here. The problem is that as soon as we get settled here we'll be moving again to our house and the transition will start all over again. So, I'm hesitant to make any changes to the Melatonin until we are settled into the house. An interesting side note about the Melatonin, when I went to purchase it after the developmental pediatrician recommended it I discovered that it only came in pill form. The bottle stated that it needed to be swallowed and not chewed. Up until that point Hannah had only ever taken liquid medicine. I had no idea how we were going to get a pill down her. The first several times it was a big fiasco. It reminded me of trying to give a cat a pill-prying open their mouth, holding down their tongue, dropping it straight down the throat, and then clamping their mouth shut so that they can't spit it out! There was much gagging, tongue thrusting, and digging out of soggy half dissolved pills. However, it didn't take long for Hannah to get the hang of it. Within two weeks she was a pro. After a month she was even able to take the pill independently although she still prefers for me to drop it in her mouth for her to swallow. This just blows my mind. Are 2 1/2 year olds supposed to be able to take pills? Isn't that why they make chewable children's Tylenol? Hannah's always been a good medicine taker. I'm sure some of this has to do with the fact that medicine is just a routine part of our house. She sees me take many different pills each day so I guess for her taking a pill is just what people do. She's always wanted to do anything that is considered a "big girl" thing-hence her early transition to a twin bed, ditching the high chair early, and beginning potty training on her own at 18 months so maybe that's why she worked so hard to learn how to take pills. She just wanted to be like Mommy. I sure hope I'm not raising a little addict by her already having the ability to pop a pill like it's no big deal.

Hannah has finally learned how to have some independence in the new bathrooms here. She devised a way to reach the toilet paper and has perfected her balance on the large hole in the seat while tearing it off. She still can't wash her hands independently because the counter tops are just so darn high, but being able to wipe by herself is a plus anyway. Yesterday she was taking a long time in the bathroom and I went to see why she hadn't called for me to come help her wash her hands. When I got to the bathroom the door was shut. This was unusual in itself, but when I went to open the door I discovered that she had locked herself in the bathroom! I went into full blown panic mode in about 5 seconds flat. My mind was racing wondering what she might get into and how she could hurt herself and what if she wouldn't unlock the door and let me in. Might I have to leave her alone in the apartment and go down to the lobby and ask the maintenance people for help (I don't know the lobby phone number, but I'm planning on finding out today!)? Would they have to remove the door from it's hinges? Then finally I got ahold of myself and I just calmly asked Hannah to unlock the door so I could come in like it was no big deal and amazingly she did as I asked. I've never been happier in my life that she obeyed! We had a big conversation after that about how she should never lock the bathroom door because it's unsafe and while she's at it why don't' we just leave the bathroom door open or at least cracked from now on. She agreed so let's hope we don't have any further incidences of her locking me out of the bathroom.


Patty O. said...

I love that story about the maintenance guy. We had to do the same thing for our kids. When Danny learne how to get out of his crib, we couldn't keep him in his room, so we put a lock on the door and locked him in at night. Luckily, it only took a couple of nights of doing this before he started staying in his room. Then, we had to put the knob covers on Char's room to keep Danny OUT of her room while she was napping. Danny figured out how to open those, too.
Glad Hannah is sleeping better!

Anonymous said...

Something that worked for us with our little ones was to put on a CD of soft, soothing music. It helped us to relax as well as them. As you read her a goodnight story, you might have it playing softly in the background and maybe she will be lulled into a peaceful sleep.

Elizabeth Channel said...

I'm so glad she is sleeping better, too! That's amazing she can swallow the Melatonin. My E can't swallow a pill yet so he chews his chewable Melatonin. I'd never heard you couldn't chew it and we've been taking it for about a year now. It's orange-flavored. Oh well, it does work wonders for us, and we just take the one-milligram.

Lora said...

I was curious to hear how the melatonin was helping. Write an update when you decide to up the dosage. We have a bottle in our cabinet, but haven't used it yet. I'm hoping to hold off. He will trick me with a week of falling asleep quickly, but then he'll go back to taking 2 hours to fall asleep. Ours is liquid melatonin, ordered online. I'm amazed she can take a pill! That's handy.