When new moms return to work after their maternity leave is up, they often find themselves facing a difficult period of adjustment. When Memphis mom Rebecca Tafaro Boyer headed back to her job as a nurse following the birth of her 3-month-old baby William last month, she took extra precautions. Rebecca asked her husband David to send “hourly updates and recaps” so she could keep tabs on how her infant son was doing on his first day without her, and to put her mind at ease.
Although some people may find the concept of constant updates a little over the top, one of the text exchanges the new parents had that day ended up saving William’s life. When David sent her a snap of their son in his car seat, the new mom replied to let him know that it looked like William’s position in the seat needed some adjustment. In a now-viral and lengthy Facebook post, Rebecca recounted how what probably seemed like a “nagging” text ended up saving her son’s life.
“My nagging wife reply was to correct William’s position in the car seat,” she explained in her post. “The straps were too loose and the chest clip was way too low. And because I know my husband, I’m sure that he laughed at me and rolled his eyes before tightening the car seat and fixing the chest clip.”
No one could have predicted what happened next, however. About 15 minutes after their text conversation, Rebecca received a phone call from her husband. He let her know that he and William had been in a car accident. Thankfully, they both survived the accident, in which an SUV pulled into oncoming traffic to make a lefthand turn, forcing David to slam on his brakes at nearly 50 miles per hour. He ended up colliding with the front passenger side door of the other vehicle.
Despite the impact, William was safe, likely due to his mom’s insistence that his positioning in his car seat was adjusted.
“My precious little bundle of joy was so well restrained in his car seat, THAT HE DIDN’T EVEN WAKE UP,” Boyer wrote. “Even with the impact of the two cars, William only received a minor jolt – so insignificant that he was able to continue on with his nap, and then spend the next two hours flirting with nurses in the Le Bonheur ED.”
Her husband ended up with a broken foot and three dislocated toes, but the new parents are beyond grateful that both David and William survived.
“The car is a loss, but cars can be replaced – my boys can’t,” she wrote.
Rebecca went on to urge all parents to double check that they were following all safety guidelines surrounding car seats at all times, even if it seemed overly cautious. She then directed caregivers to safekids.org to get up-to-date car seat safety and proper installation information. She noted that such information can also be obtained at a local children’s hospital or police department.
#DYK: Correctly used child safety seats can reduce the risk of death by as much as 71 percent. Our Ultimate Car Seat Guide has tips, resources, and how-to video to help you get the best use of your child's car seat: https://t.co/pxkTKZSK3J
— Safe Kids Worldwide (@safekids) August 2, 2018
Her post has now been shared more than 35,000 times. Rebecca told The Washington Post that she decided to share her story publicly because, “I was so relieved that he had fixed the car seat and that it had worked properly. It’s rare that you hear a story like this and it’s good news.”