My daily routine started by stepping gingerly in the area where she was confined the night before. A baby-gate had served as a sufficient deterrent. Keeping her confined to a small room and adjacent bathroom area.
One night as I slept – as usual I open my eyes for a brief moment and am reassured by Hubby’s heavy presence beside me in the bed. My peripheral vision reveals a light down stairs. I thought okay probably Hubby or one of the boys left a light on down stairs. No biggy. Go to sleep. Well my mind wanders and I cannot get rid of thoughts of Auntie on the loose in the kitchen with her chameleon walk setting the house on fire, or worse, scaling the steps to invade the privacy of the upper floor.
I get up and to my chagrin; there she is doing her chameleon walk in the dimly lit family room. I usher her off to bed. And look to see that the room is secured. When my toes, now firmly planted on the carpet, squash into the luke warm puddle and the acrid odor wafts up from around my ankle. “Damn!” This night she found a way to breach my security barrier. “My God, she’s adapted!”
Of course there was the clean-up but then I spent the rest of the morning from 1:16 a.m., forward on night watch making sure she didn’t escape the baby gated area. When it was truly time to wake up I was exhausted. The only thing that kept me alive was the knowledge that we had an 8:45 a.m. appointment with her doctor to change the meds. And get us all back to sleep.
Certain nights and days proved challenging (a big understatement) akin to the night of the security breach. So now I had to engineer a safe, temporary, way to keep her confined at night. My solution was to raise the baby-gate on the wall just high enough so that she could not contort her spindly leg high enough to scale it. The gate was a spring-loaded, plastic contraption with rubber grips, manufactured by Safety First. I’d purchased it from Babies-R-Us when my firstborn started toddling. It had served us well. It even proved useful when we brought home our puppy. Somehow I’d kept it through the years but never dreamed it would function in its current capacity. We continued satisfactorily with the baby-gate in its new position on the wall at night. Each morning, Auntie would awaken, open the door to her room, which I’d now placed a bell on, signaling to me to promptly greet her at the baby-gate, safe in knowing that the gate once more served its purpose to deter her from leaving safe confinement unsupervised.