I have, kind of sort of, not fully supervised my children in the bathtub to save my sanity.
Let me explain a few things. First of all, I have diligently supervised my babies in the bathtub. Secondly, kind of sort of not supervising does not mean that I leave the area or put on headphones.
So what's this all about, you ask. It starts with an old friend in Chicago. Tracy and her husband lived in the same condo building as me and Gabe. They were the first couple to have a baby, then they moved to Italy. They had a massive garage sale the summer I found out I was pregnant so naturally I was very curious to see all their baby stuff. Tracy had tons of SIDS prevention gear. She touted her gear, all of it - "you definitely need one of these foam wedges for the crib" - that sort of thing. I was dumbfounded. I was probably looking at her, dumbfounded, in the middle of a "you need..." rant when she finally just sighed, dropped her shoulders and said, "Okay, what you really need is to know that all mothers have their thing. You know, a mother's fear. Mine was SIDS so I bought every anti-SIDS creation out there."
Okay, 6 1/2 years later I get it. But SIDS was never my thing. The bathroom is my thing. And I'm not even all that fearful of drowning as you would imagine a mother's fear of the bathroom might be. I'm just so anxious about all that hard stuff. The toilet, the entire toilet, is hard. Seat, bowl, tank. The sink it hard. And it has corners. The floor is ceramic - it's so damn hard. The tub is hard. I just picture children slipping and knocking out their teeth. Oh! and that faucet. Talk about your head-banging, backside-scraping welt maker. Egads!
Knock on wood (if you can find any in that bathroom) none of my children have ever had a terrible bathroom accident. But as they multiply and grow larger, the bathroom and bath time becomes a night at the water park. They are splashing and stomping and diving and sliding. Literally sliding. One side of our tub is slightly curved so they stand up, lean their slippery butts against the wall, lift up both feet simultaneously and whoosh! it's a slide. It's a total lip-biter for me, that's for sure.
And you know what happens when I'm in there...supervising. "Look mama!" "Watch this Mama!" And it just intensifies. Each new bathtub stunt has to be grander than the last. I don't need to watch my children do a jack-knife off the towel rack into the tub. No no no.
So I wander around the hall, listening and listening and, oh who am I kidding, checking in on them every 2 1/2 seconds and trying again and again to sit on the toilet and watch them play so I really am supervising them. You worry not. But I'm just so eager for two things to happen:
1) Splashing only games. Splash! Splash like crazy. Even though I'm irrationally fearful of you slipping, I've got tons of rugs and towels with which to cover the floor so you just go crazy in there and I can sop up the puddles. Just keep your rear ends and feet down. (You can even play that game where you pretend to sip bath water, or um, actually drink bath water and you can even, um, play that game where you actually sip bath water and spit it because all of those activities are typically conducted while seated.)
2) The end. One last, "Be careful, it's slipper!" and then I can breathe a sigh of relief, but not until they are safely traversing the carpeted hallway.