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Parenting: A Game of Inches

Parenting: A Game of Inches

Today’s post is courtesy of Andy Schlosberg, a full-time working dad of a toddler and infant twins.

The saying goes that close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, right? With kids I find myself thinking, “Wow, that was close…” all the time. Close call moments seem to be the norm in daily life with a toddler.

Last weekend, my nine-year-old nephew kicked a soccer ball that missed hitting my toddler, Grey, by an inch. Granted Grey would have been okay, but there would have been tears from both kids. One from the pain and the other from the resulting lecture. Because I was the only “adult” (yes, I still need to put that in quotes since I have not accepted it yet) present, I was relieved to see Grey’s obliviousness to the close encounter and therefore simply told my nephew to be more careful next time. 

Later that same night, Grey was putting on his jacket and like every kid does, he was using the flip technique (at what age do we all stop using this technique?). As he was doing this, the zipper on his jacket just barely missed hitting his infant brother, Cole, who was propped up nearby on a boppy, in the eye. It only missed by an inch.

Back when Grey was just learning to walk, we were living on the second floor of a multiple-level condo. One time, after he was already pretty good at going down the stairs on his bum, I did not rush to get in front him. As I am sure you can guess, this was the exact moment that he decided to try and walk down the stairs the same way Mommy and Daddy do. He of course stumbled and was about to roll head first down the spiral staircase. On his first roll his foot came up and I was luckily able to grab it before he bumped his way down the next 10 stairs and straight into the hospital. He was scared, but not injured. Me? This was well over a year ago and I am still recovering, but very thankful for that one inch that allowed me to grab his foot!

Moments like this have made me realize that the line between smiles and tears is so narrow. Many of them are the result of mixing a toddler with…well…anything, but especially with infants. Yet, sometimes these moments result from something as simple as tripping over a toy car while carrying one of the twins, but quickly catching my balance. These close calls are true reminders of how parenting is sometimes a real game of inches. And, that finding “balance” in parenting is often important in more ways than one.

Have you had close calls like these?

Andy Schlosberg Bright Horizons BloggerI’m a working dad of a toddler and infant twins. I’ll be sharing my adventures as I attempt to navigate the challenges of working full-time, parenting three children under age three, house-hunting, moving…and finding time to sleep.





  1. Profile photo of Amy

    Amy June 4, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    In our house, the new game of inches is how long is the scar going to be from Owen’s latest fall. I wrote about this a few month ago when he got his first stitches:

    Hang in there – there is more to come!

  2. Andy June 5, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Ouch, I just read about Owen’s ‘adventure.’ Grey is a timid kid, but has still sent us to the ER on a couple of occasions. The last time was when he fell from a chair and landed face first. All his teeth were fine, the blood stopped quickly, and he seemed overall fine, BUT the fact that my wife saw it happening and couldn’t stop it meant a trip to the ER.

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