Friday, January 27, 2012

Basement Dungeon

This morning I had what was probably the most stressful experience of my life.

I had a fairly nice/busy morning—planning the garden for spring (which I've decided is the best part of the garden experience, except maybe eating fresh, ripe-from-the-garden tomatoes), dusting, organizing Simon's room a bit, getting squash cut and deseeded to bake in the oven for Simon's lunch and for freezing, etc.

I put the squash in the oven, got some water, and headed downstairs with Simon for exercise time. I put my water and phone by the TV and told Simon I was going to the bathroom. I went down to the basement bathroom and shut the door (Simon often likes coming in and doing a variety of destructive things involving the toilet paper, cleaning supplies, and/or shower door).

When done, I opened the door to leave the bathroom. This is where things got bad. Really bad.

See, the furnace is right next to the basement bathroom (which is super tiny, claustrophobic, and has no window). The furnace has one of those weird doors that has a knob and is like an accordion (some closets have these doors). Well, Simon had managed to open the evil accordion door, and the accordion door (now two accordions strong, if you will, since it was open) was blocking the bathroom door (which opens out into the hall). Really blocking it. Like I could barely open the door.

I panicked. I used brute force to try and get out. I think I jangled the door knob funny because it then appeared broken. I couldn't even get the door open at all. (ADDENDUM: Tonight, we "locked" Jamund in the bathroom so he could experience and try to figure it out—apparently some of our doors lock if you twist the handle a certain way. So I must have locked it myself from the inside and not known it?) I was stuck. Completely locked in. Not even brute forced budged the door open.

I didn't have room (besides opening the shower door and trying to get some space there) to make a running go at the door, plus I was afraid to do so for the sake of both babies: baby inside (me) and baby outside (the door). Simon was freaking out. For all I knew, I had already broken his arm or leg by trying to push the doors open already.

I was panicking. A lot. I could see no solution besides praying A LOT and trying to convince an 18 month old to go upstairs, get my phone (which was near the TV), bring it back downstairs to me, and then hope it slid under the bathroom door. Fat chance, right?

I could stick my fingers out under the door and hoped Simon could hear me. I could see him when I laid on the floor and looked out under the door. Mostly he was either sitting right next to the door or standing a few feet away, looking scared/sad, holding his ball.

He was not going upstairs to get the phone, despite my pleas.

I reasoned that, with the phone, I could call Jamund and have him come home from work and free me. If not, I would probably have to wait until he got home at 5:30 (in approx. 7 hours) to be freed... by which time we (baby inside, me, and Simon) would be starving, who knows what destruction Simon would have unleashed on the house, the house might be burning down thanks to the squash in the oven, and Simon would be a huge pee and probably poop soaked mess.

So I prayed more—adding to my prayer that Jamund would somehow "feel" that we were in trouble and come home on his own.

Eventually, I once again tried to bust open the door (I was fully prepared to hurt myself and ruin all the doors in the process), and it worked! It worked! I was free! I called Jamund and told him what happened. Then Simon and I had some chocolate.

Lessons: put Simon in the playpen right when I go downstairs to exercise and bring my phone with me to the bathroom. Also, what is with those stupid accordion closet doors? So annoying and dangerous!


  1. I can't imagine!! I would probably STILL be hysterical. I'm so happy it worked out, though. Prayer works!

    1. Seriously! It was traumatizing and would've been so even if I hadn't also had Simon to worry about—that added a whole new dimension of panic! Parenting is hard stuff sometimes.