“I’ve just removed five button batteries from your son’s mouth. We can’t account for three which were in the packet. And we really don’t know how many batteries the parent had sent to school with their child as there are so many loose batteries in the other student’s bag.”
Imagine hearing that from your child’s teacher.
This phone call made my hands shake, my heart race and caused my body to crouch down onto the floor so that I could ground and gather myself simultaneously.
How could this happen?
Does the “how” even really matter? What’s done is done. The “how” isn’t going to magically undo any damage.
My husband was on leave luckily and we were painting our home, getting ready for Christmas as well as our baby’s baptism… the call came at an extremely chaotic time, yet, as if by magic, everything was executed perfectly.
I called the triage nurse immediately at the Children’s hospital to make notes of the situation, my husband picked up our son and took him to hospital as some of our little ones needed me at home and others were still at school. When they got to hospital our little boy was taken in instantly.
Fortunately for us there were no button batteries in his system, we felt so unbelievably blessed!
Unfortunately for the other parents of children in the class, it meant that the rest of the students also needed to have X-rays.
Can you imagine how unnecessarily busy the children’s hospital was about to get?
Where Were Those Batteries?
All because three button batteries from a blister pack were unaccounted for. And many more unsecured button batteries had been sent to school in a child’s backpack.
Are we as a community still unaware of the dangers these batteries pose if digested?
Do people believe that just because their child won’t consume them, that other people’s children would be as responsible? Or are we simply becoming irresponsible? Taking unnecessary risks with the lives of other people’s children as well as our own?
Whilst you may not be responsible for the actions of a child choosing to rip open a package of button batteries that you sent to school with your own child, perhaps, it may benefit the community to remember that our actions, big or small, most certainly do have an impact on other people’s lives.
If my son’s teacher hadn’t seen what happened and stopped my son before it was too late this article could have had an extremely different and most heartbreaking ending.
What if the teacher didn’t see?
What if he ate them and came home as normal without anyone knowing any different?
What if I didn’t find out until it was too late as many less fortunate parents have done?
The thought sends chills down my spine. And makes me catch my breath in fear.
We’ve all seen those headlines. Well, a majority of us have anyway. The ones which let us know of the devastating and unfortunate loss of a child due to ingesting one of these deadly batteries. And the message is always the same. It’s an unfortunate yet preventable tragedy.
We need to be more aware. More cautious. More understanding of the risks.
Even if your child knows not to ingest these deadly button batteries. Please remember that other children may not be as understanding. Don’t run the risk with their lives. It’s not worth it.
Could we rename button batteries “baby killers” just to jog parent’s memory and remind everyone to secure these deadly silver bullets.
If we as parents often complain about how challenging parenting is, isn’t the least we can do to strive to make it easier on our fellow person by not sending dangerous substances to school? Do we really need to complicate teachers’ jobs? Do we have any right to pose such high risks to our community?
Please, for the sake of our children, read the warning labels, and don’t gamble with little one’s lives. These button batteries most certainly can be baby killers.
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