5 Superhero Traits All Moms Have
The superpowers you didn't know you had -- until you had a child
Super presence of mind!
1-800-222-1222. Stephanie Chandler picked up the phone and "just started dialing." She'd been helping 3-year-old Luke brush his teeth when she suddenly noticed her 18-month-old daughter, Evie, "gulping down a bottle of bubble-bath soap like some hobo with a paper bag," she says.
She checked the label: Keep Out of Reach of Children. And then she dialed Poison Control, as if on autopilot. "My pediatrician had given me a sticker with it ages ago and I'd placed it on one of our phones. But I'd never tried to memorize the number, since I assumed I wouldn't be able to," says the Queen Creek, AZ, mom.
Nevertheless, it popped into her head when she needed it. "A part of me worried I might be calling a vending-machine supplier in Vermont, but sure enough, Poison Control answered," she says. (Thankfully, she was told that guzzling the soap is harmless.)
You'd think that the fear and hysteria triggered by a crisis involving a child would erase all presence of mind. Yet many parents report the opposite. It's only later -- when everything's okay -- that they fall apart. "Your son will be fine," an ER doctor once told my sister-in-law, who had calmly wrapped her toddler's bloody finger when it was mashed in a van door and then driven him to the hospital and nursed him through stitches. "But you're whiter than he is, and I think you need to sit down before you leave." By then, she could.