Accidents happen. When you have kids, they're something of an inevitability. That doesn't make us moms feel better, though, especially when we're the ones who are the cause of the casualty (and it happens far more often than we'd perhaps like to admit). From a fingernail clipping that gets a little too close to stepping on tiny toes that are perpetually under foot, we've all done it. That's why I asked other moms to share the low-key hilarious ways they've accidentally hurt their kid. There are stories galore, and I think all of us can feel a little better knowing that it's not just us.
I am intimately familiar with the ins and outs of causing unintentional harm to the little person in my care. I frequently co-bathe with my toddler, and I'll sometimes use the opportunity to shave as well (because who has time?). One evening, after getting her naked and placing the towels within arm's reach, I got my razor out of the shower and placed it on the counter. In the middle of disrobing, my daughter grabbed the razor and started trying to shave my foot. I was so surprised that I jerked my foot away and full on kneed her in the forehead. She was so upset with me she would only accept comfort from daddy.
The fact is, we've all been there. Fortunately, most mishaps are fairly minor, and kids are resilient little healers. There's nothing funny about it in the moment, but they do say that laughter is the best medicine. If we can look back and laugh, it will go a long way toward easing that mom guilt, which, if you ask these ladies, lasts a lot longer than any boo-boo:
"I dropped my cellphone on both of my kids' heads more times than I can count in the first few sleepless weeks."
"Walking baby around the house, trying to get her to sleep, and just as she’s finally dozing, *clunk*! Her head didn’t quite clear the door frame. Um, my bad.
And let’s not even start with baby rolling off the bed. I’m pretty sure that’s a rite of passage as a parent (and a baby, I guess)."
"I was working crazy hours after my first was born. I wasn’t even getting real breaks to eat or pump, so I’d get home exhausted, engorged, and starving. I would always nurse first thing, and my husband would bring me food. I had sort of worked out a system to multitask with nursing, eating, and doing work on a laptop.
All was fine until one day when my husband served me chili... and I managed to spill it on my baby. He screamed, I screamed (it wasn’t that hot), and I was convinced I had permanently scarred my baby (I didn’t) that I spent the next few hours sobbing hysterically."
"When my son was about 2 months old, I thought it would be absolutely precious to let him sleep on my belly, which it was... until I was startled awake and flung him off the bed and onto the floor.
When he was just starting to sit up and eat food, so maybe 6-7 months old, we were eating at IKEA and he was pretending to feed me. I BIT HIS FINGER. He let out such a shriek that the entire dining room fell silent and turned to stare at us.
He’s totally OK now — top of his preschool class and has good enough range of motion in that finger to beat me at video games, but as a new parent at the time... traumatizing."
"So my daughter was about 5 months old, and I was breastfeeding around the clock and parenting alone. I was so exhausted that I pulled her in the bed with me because I just couldn’t take anymore of the being up every two hours all night and working 40 hours a week that I had nothing left in me.
In the middle of the night she rolled off the bed. Well, it scared me when she hit the floor, and I jumped up out of bed and gouged her right between the eyes with my toenail.
Thankfully, there is no scar, but I had to look at her poor face for a month knowing I got her with my damn toe."
"While I was clipping my son's fingernails, I clipped his fingertip and made him bleed. You know: every parent's nightmare? I still feel like a monster about it."
"My son used to get about an inch from my face when he would wake me up. Like usual, he was right in my face trying to wake me up. The problem was that I was having a dream, and in my dream I was punching something. My arm must have jerked out because I woke up when I made contact with his face.
The look of betrayal he gave me was fierce. He learned an important lesson that day, though: stay out of people's faces when they are sleeping."
"Totally swatted a mosquito, on my son's face, when he was 6 months old."
"I love letting my nails go as long as they will grow. Well, as I was chasing my son one day, I wrestled him to the ground to tickle him, and accidentally scratched his right cheek. He bled a bit, and now, months later, he still has a small noticeable scar. Makes me sad whenever I see it."
"Our son needs help to wipe after going to the bathroom. My hubby had him lean over and accidentally smacked his forehead into the bathroom counter as he was wiping my son's bottom."
"Once I was FaceTiming with my sister from my iPad. I grabbed it to walk to another room and had a better grip on the cover than the tablet. The iPad detached from the cover and fell, making direct contact with the bridge of my toddler’s nose. It definitely left a mark."
"We were visiting some friends out of town. We had a Samsonite suitcase, the hard kind with a latch. My son was about 1 year old. I laid him down on the bed to change him while my husband was packing. Just as he was closing the suitcase, my son stuck his arm out and his fingers got smashed. Black and blue, but not broken. We felt so bad!"
"Once I was playing baseball on the Wii while holding my 6-month-old. I went to swing with the remote and accidentally whacked her in the head. She had a bump on her forehead for a day or two. I felt awful. No more holding babies while playing video games."
"I was nursing my youngest (she was 4.5 months old at the time), and she unexpectedly bit my breast hard enough to draw blood. It hurt so badly that I instinctively slapped her on her bare thigh. She cried and I felt awful, but she never bit me again."
"I knocked my 4-year-old over with the car seat I was carrying. I couldn’t see him, and I turned and knocked him clean off his feet. I felt so bad!"
"Removing an embedded tick from my son's thigh, with a just-blown-out match. He flinched. I burned him. We did get the tick, though."
"My son was hanging on to the side of the shopping cart. We were leaving the grocery store. He was talking to me and not looking forward. I pushed the cart too close to a pole and let him walk right into it."
"I was carrying my oldest to bed, while wrapped in a silky blanket. He was struggling because did not want to go to bed. He slipped out of the blanket onto the hard wood floors.
He is now 17, very smart and starting college classes in the fall. No long term damage!"
"We moved some furniture around about two months after my second was born. Baby girl was sleeping in her swing and woke up. I went to get her out and sit on the couch like I always do. Grab, turn, take a few steps, then sat. It was habit... totally ingrained. But we added a sofa table.
So when I went to turn (with as much speed as usual) I smacked her little head on the corner of the table. She screamed. I tightened my grip afraid to look down. I yelled for my husband to come get her and inspect her. She had a great 'noggin bonker' but was totally fine. I stopped rushing through the motions then... well, temporarily at least!"
"When my oldest was an infant, I used to place his car seat, with him in it, on the trunk of the car. It was a very flat trunk, never had a problem... until my husband waxed the car. I set the car seat there like I always had and reached in the car to place the diaper bag, purse, etc., inside. Then I heard a thud. I came out to find his car seat upside down in the driveway! (He was fine)."
"One day my husband and 5-month-old were playing on the floor in our family room. I was straightening up and found her teether ring in the living room. Being lazy, I decided that I'd just toss it onto the mat next to them. Except I've never had great aim and instead of watching it land gently on the mat, I watched it fly through the air and smack my daughter right in the face. She cried, I cried, my husband laughed, and eventually everyone was fine."
"I was fixing lunch for my son the other day, and I was cutting up some strawberries. He kept trying to grab the strawberry while I was cutting. Well, he was too fast and I cut his little finger. Not bad, a little more than a paper cut. Now every time I fix his lunch and have to cut something he says, 'Don’t cut my finger, mama.'”
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.