They say it happens to all Mom's at least once. My day was yesterday and it was the worst feeling I've experienced to date.
After church yesterday morning we (Andrew's parents, his sister, nephew, my two sisters and us) all went out for lunch. I was near the front and Andrew headed up the rear. As soon as we got our table I made a dash for the bathroom. Can't hold it very long now with a 7 month growing baby in the belly :)
I came back to the table and noticed everyone was sitting down except for JaneClaire and my sister Charity. I asked where they were and Andrew replied that they had gone to the bathroom. Next thing I knew Charity was back, but no JC. Fear like none other hit me. "WHERE is JaneClaire??" Charity said she wasn't with her...never had been. No one had seen her. I jumped up along with Andrew and his parents and started running around looking for her. My legs felt like jello. I can remember feeling like I was in slow motion, a dreamy feeling, all the noises around me were muffled. I wanted to cry and scream. I yelled for her. I could see people eating everywhere and no one seemed to pay attention. I looked for any sign of blond hair or a red gingerbread dress. After what seemed like hours I turned around and saw Rocky, Andrew's Dad, walking in from outside. He had my baby!! I ran to her and hugged her, kissed her and cried. She was crying, her nose was bleeding (I assume from being so upset)...her face told me that she had been crying for some time. Her little nose was bright red and her face and eyes were puffy. She was still wearing her coat. I asked her where she was. "I was outside sitting on the curb crying for you!!" She had never come in the restaurant with us. When we were all coming in she said that she stopped "to pick cattails". Andrew said when he and his Dad went outside they could hear her screaming for us. She told me she was sorry. So was I. How could I have let this happen? I have never misplaced my babies! I didn't want her out of my sight. After we had settled down, I took JC through the buffet line for her food. She held my arm as we walked together. "Mom, did you hear my praying?" "No, what were you praying about?" "I said, Dear God, Thank you for this day. Please help me find my Mommy and Daddy."
I cried again and kissed her. Thank you God for keeping her safe!!
Later last night as we were snuggled on the couch watching TV I asked her what she did when she noticed we were all gone. "I sat on the curb and started crying. I yelled for you but I knew to stay in one place. I was scared I would get hit by a car. People even saw me and they just stared and walked by me!!"
At pm service last night, I talked with some friends about what happened. Much to my surprise each Mom had a similar story..."I lost mine at Disney World" "I lost her at the mall" "She was missing at the bowling alley"....
JC fell asleep early last night. As I watched her, I prayed... thanking God again for keeping her safe and bringing her back to me. Anything could have happened and I had to force myself from thinking about it. I have experienced a fear greater than I could have imagined. She was only gone for a few minutes...but those minutes seemed like eternity.
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