My trip to Target today turned into a trip to nightmare town, and no I don’t mean because I spent too much money. I mean honestly who doesn’t spend too much money when they go there? If there is a person on this planet who can spend less than $30.00 when they go there then by all means I suggest that you write a book and hold a seminar because you my friend will make millions, but I’ve gotten sidetracked. My trip turned into my worst nightmare. I lost my child in Target and I may never recover.
That’s right you read those words correctly, although I don’t know that lost is the proper description but maybe missed my child. Yes missed my child by mere seconds as the elevator doors closed with him on one side and me on the other. Let’s talk about panic for a moment…okay enough of that I’m starting to panic again. It is by far the worst feeling in the world. When your brain and body go into panic mode there is no telling what is going to happen.
To know me is to know that my children are my world. I would never put them or allow them to get into any situation that would harm them. I’m not a helicopter mom, more like a paper airplane mom. You know the mom who hovers a bit but turns away ever so slightly to let her children discover the world on their own. My boys are young so by discover the world on their own I mean play in the sandbox without me sitting on top of them. I do not mean get into an elevator and take it down into a parking garage on their own. HELL NO!! Yet somehow today, that was exactly what happened.
It all started out as a regular trip to Target; only today I had both the 4yo and the 2yo with me because Thursday is not a preschool day for my oldest. We went there to buy apple juice for my 4yo’s “Special Day” in school tomorrow, where I get to be class mom and provide the snack. We left with apple juice, saran wrap, icing, a sundress, and a pack of gum, which in and of itself felt like a success. I parked in the underneath parking garage mainly because my boys love to shout and hear their voices echo back and they both think the elevator is super cool. I shared in this feeling until today.
We paid for our things and headed towards the elevator. My 4yo, living in his own little world bumped into an old lady and I said to him honey please watch where you are going and say sorry to that lady. She smiled and said “It’s okay he is happy and I’m fine.” I smiled and we continued on our way. My son asked if he could hit the button to which I said sure go ahead. The elevator opened he got in and I am not kidding as I pushed the cart with my 2yo the doors were flying shut. I tried to bang the cart into the doors to stop it and then tried to hit the button but nothing. It was too late. I saw my son staring at me as the doors closed and that was it….UTTER PANIC!! I started to scream and cry. I was hitting the button as if it was going to make time magically turn back. My 2yo sensed the panic in me and he started to scream and shout his brother’s name at the top of his lungs. So now I am trying to comfort my youngest while I am still losing my mind. The second elevator opened and my instinct made me jump in and head down. When I got there…he was not there. I screamed his name 100 times all while frantically hitting the button to go back up. We got back in and headed back up to find my 4yo standing holding hands with the old lady he had bumped into and her nurse. (for the record if you see a security video go viral of a woman losing it in an elevator and probably using quite a bit of profanity, yup it was me.)
I cried. I cried like I haven’t cried in God knows how long. I never want to feel that way again. I hugged him. He was so calm. The old lady looked at me and said you poor thing. That stupid elevator shut so fast I told my nurse to go complain to customer service. You were so worried I was trying to tell you that I would wait here in case he came back up but I knew you couldn’t hear anything. You were in survival mode.
This is my Grandma, she's awesome and this is how I will always picture the old lady in Target (my angel)
Still crying I said “I can’t thank you enough. I was beyond panicked.” She looked at me and said “Well I can tell you’re a good mother so don’t beat yourself up.” Then she looked at my son and said “Don’t ever get on an elevator again without holding mommy’s hand okay?” “Okay I promise” he said. We got in the car and I went over all the things he should do if he is ever separated from me again. He said okay to me as if I was annoying him but I repeated it anyway.
I can tell you one thing, my son didn’t think about this incident once after we got into the car. I however have replayed it approximately 2,761 times. I love my boys more than anything on this planet and the things that could have possibly happened in this situation will most likely cause me to lose sleep for quite some time. I never thought something like this would happen to me. I mean I’ve heard about things like this and thought: No way would that happen to me. Today I realized it can and it did. I am a mom. I am not perfect. I make mistakes. I beat myself up over them sometimes. I will probably not go to Target for at least a week!
When you leave a comment on this one tell me a time that sent you into “panic/survival mode” Tell me about the time as a parent that made you lose sleep.
Me & my oldest. (He's never riding an elevator again!)