Monday, January 11, 2010

Faster Than Coffee

6:45 a.m. Mikhail and I are lounging in bed, savoring the last few moments of half-sleep.

Elan climbs out of bed, where he's been snuggling with us, swipes my cell phone off the nightstand and retreats into the hallway. We hear him pushing the numbers, a favorite pasttime.

Then: "Hi." I think he is pretending to talk on the phone, and wait for him to start addressing Dory.

But then: quiet, as if he is listening. Listening intently. I think I hear a woman's tinny voice. No, I must be imagining it. He has never actually dialed before.

Then: "She's in bed."

"Elan, are you talking to someone?" I jump out of bed, assuming he's managed to call one of the last-dialed numbers. "Are you talking to Nana?"

He's sitting in the hall in his footed sleeper, with a shocked look on his face, and he doesn't protest when I swipe the phone out of his hand.

"Hello?" I say.

"Hello, ma'am? Your child has just called 911."

I am instantly wide awake, an espresso shot straight to the bloodstream. I look down at the keypad: Emergency. "Oh my gosh," I sputter. "I'm so sorry."

"That's okay, ma'am. Just don't let him play with the phone."

"Sorry," I say again, the call already ended.

I look at the Calls Dialed list and see that he's dialed 112. This is not surprising, since he likes to push the number buttons in order and often multiple times. I'm using a new cell phone, and the little green "call" button must look appealing. What I don't understand is how this connects to 911. I go online and find out that 112 is the Emergency number for all mobile phones worldwide. Well, what do you know!

When you're a parent, you definitely do learn something new everyday. Usually by embarrassing yourself.

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