We had an eventful evening Thursday night. The husband is singing in the choir for our Easter services, and I was slated to sing in a quartet with him, so the whole family trundled off to a midweek nighttime rehearsal. The boys were bathed early and came in almost pajamas, and the plan was for them and me to hang out in the nursery during choir practice and then for us to join the husband afterward for our quartet practice.
So, off we went. We played for a while, the boys and I, with the toys in the nursery closets, which are kept locked during the week but can be opened with a set of keys hidden *shhh* behind the picture frame. The closets are filled with lots of fun and new-to-us toys, and there's the added bonus that, once opened, the closets provide Baby E with hiding places at his level in which to play. Like J when he was this age, Baby E loves cabinets, closets, anything with doors that open and shut behind which he can hide. He was in heaven in these closets. That is, until J closed the door behind Baby E...and suddenly the keys wouldn't unlock the door! These are old locks, meant for doors into rooms not doors on cabinets, so they have a mechanism that, when moved, means they can only be unlocked from the inside. And somehow that mechanism got moved, either when I unlocked them or when J fiddled with them or when I fiddled with them to get them back the way they were, some time in there the locks got locked.
Upshot: my baby was locked in an unlockable cabinet! After I made sure the keys no longer worked, I beat the land speed record into the chapel, motioned frantically to the husband to come at once, and ran back. By then, Baby E was beginning to cry, not liking all the darkness. He was less happy still when the husband arrived and shouted to the sister who followed him out to go get one of the men who had been carrying a toolbox with him that evening. Meanwhile, I pried the door open a crack at the bottom and shouted for J to get Baby E's binky, which I squeezed in to him, which helped to calm him down just a tiny bit as the husband used a screwdriver, pliers, and a hammer to take the hinges off the door, which he managed to do in what seemed like an agonizingly long time but really took just a few moments, with Baby E gripping my fingertips, all he could reach through the crack in the door, the whole time.
My blood pressure has never gotten so high so quickly nor has it taken so long to come down. There was much hugging and clutching and thanking and sighing. We quickly cleaned up with mess of toys we'd made and then headed for the chapel to watch the rest of choir practice. I was having a little PTSD about staying in the nursery, truth be told!
Then, while we were waiting/decompressing, I was walking with Baby E up the aisle toward the husband, and I let him stand on his own holding onto the side of a pew, as we have been practicing of late, and he suddenly let go...and took off walking! At least 10 steps or so, all on his own, unprompted, lurching and laughing but completely upright and propelled in the direction of his daddy. Incredulous, I scooped him up and took him back to where he had started, set him down...and watched him take off again, walking as if he'd been practicing in secret and was just waiting for a dramatic moment in which to unveil his new talent. He repeated this new feat multiple times over the night and has walked in short spurts every day since, so I guess it's official: we have a walker!
Perhaps while trapped in a small dark space all alone, he thought to himself, "I think I need to be able to get places on my own because who can trust these yay-hoos who are supposed to be protecting me?!" Hmmmmm.....