Thursday, September 27, 2012

Losing Tate

I have plenty of bad mothering moments: yelling at my kids in frustration, not watching them, not feeling sorry when they get hurt because they were most likely being dumb or reckless or just plain not paying attention. So I am happy to own up to it. On Tuesday, I was NOT having one of those moments. And I managed to lose an entire child for an entire hour. I went to answer the door while Tate was playing in the family room with my back door open to our fenced in yard. It was the UPS guy mistakenly delivering a case of wine which was actually, ironically enough, intended to go to Eli's kindergarten teacher. We joked heartily about making sure the stuff was consumed after school hours...ha ha ha, goodbye, maybe a two minute conversation. I came back into the kitchen and started doing the dishes before I realized I did not see or hear Tate--silence is NEVER a good sign in my house. I knew the back door and the garage were open because Eli was outside with friends, which were both plausible escape routes. I checked all the window wells outside, tore through my house screaming his name so all my neighbors could hear and asked the kids outside if they had seen him. I went up and down from the basement to my bedroom 3 or 4 times, panicking and crying before I jumped in my car and started canvassing the neighborhood. Eli, bless his heart, helped me check the parks and yell out the window before reassuring me that Max (our next door neighbor) must have found him by now so we should go back so he could play. I called Adam 57 times, and headed to my community center to see if anyone had turned him into the lost and found. In the back of my head, I knew Adam was working, in the middle of stitching up someone's mouth actually, and that there was not much good that could be done by him--other than what I was already doing. I knew that, logically. But there was just something about hearing him calmly say, "ok, I will come home." He didn't even offer any particularly helpful suggestions but just knowing that someone else shares the burden of your missing child (even for a moment)felt better for some reason. I was ready to call the police and had nightmarish visions of endless days of never knowing what happened to my child. Dramatic, I know but I was positive that the UPS guy was an intended diversion and that someone had come and taken him out of my backyard and I would never see him again. So as I was driving, my backdoor neighbor calls; I answer and say "Do you have Tate????" She chuckled and said "Well, Aaron is not here..." which I was so irritated by because it was a completely irrelevant point since my CHILD WAS MISSING!!! "...I just got home from work and I heard something out on the back porch. I opened the door and Tate walked in and proceeded to go find the toys." So my two year old can climb the fence. Didn't know that! I went to pick him up and he started hitting me and telling me to go away and he was playing at Aaron's house; it was a lovely reunion. When I got home, I realized he had dragged a step ladder out of the laundry room and placed it up against the fence and climbed over. He was such a little brat before and after I lost him, screaming at me and hitting me all day. So it was probably a good day to lose him because then I really really liked him for at least that one hour of the day when I thought I would never see him again. Both kids went to bed at 7 o clock that fact, it may have been 6:57 when I closed\locked (don't judge) the door.


Lisa & Ella said...

Yep, you've earned a little girl. I had visions of finding my front door ajar in Loma Linda and Jackson making off down the street. Luckily the worst part was that I had to be seen still in my pjs at 11am.

Elisa said...

I love you Ash!! You totally say the things I want to say but don't dare! Glad he's safe and sound.