Monday, March 21, 2005

Have you seen two kids with umbrellas?

It has happened twice in one week - the moment that will turn any mother into a maniac - the moment that you realize you have lost one of your kids (or they have lost you).

The first instance wasn't so bad. A wandered off at the zoo. He did it on purpose because he was mad (he's not enjoying the whole "gotta be a team player in a family" thing). We did see him actually stomp off in his pouting frenzy. Yet, Michael and I both realized how differently the situation would have played out had we not witnessed his exit, and just turned around to thin air. Ugh. It made our hearts ache.

Which leads me to today. I'll make a really long story short (I know! Can Christine actually do that? At least let me try.). We arrive late at the doctor's office, and the rain is pouring. My oldest two children assure me that they can make it to the front door without me (besides, they rarely get to sport their umbrellas!). They head out, and I load up the youngest two.

I get to the door and they're not there. They had gotten confused in the rain and wind, and were standing in the downpour at a side door - realizing I was not coming - and panicking. I'll skip the details of what it was like, running around for several minutes between two entrances (babies in tow), screaming for my children.

Then I stepped outside again, and I saw them coming around the corner of the building. M was surprisingly just fine (outside of a muddy flip-flop). However, it was A ... my sweet boy ... who was screaming and crying (couldn't get his umbrella opened, which is enough to send any five year old into a tizzy - because umbrellas are only cool if they're open). I can't describe his face, but I could feel what he was feeling. I wasn't scared anymore (the whole time, I knew they had probably just gone to the wrong door), but my whole heart shifted. I could feel his absolute terror.

Throw that on top of the Jessica Lunsford media coverage, and I'm pretty sure my sleep won't be soft tonight.

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