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Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Heart Attack

StoriesfromtheTrenches_edited-1

It doesn't happen often but when it does it's nearly fatal.

For a few moments, you lose sight of your child.

At first you think, he's going to be right there, calm down, he will just appear any second.

And then he doesn't.

The panic sets in and 30 seconds goes by, a minute goes by and with each passing minute it becomes an eternity.

You simultaneously go into lockup and begin to run around in that panicky way. You can't feel your limbs and for that eternity that is only actually a few short minutes you've already gone over every scenario in your head, the call to 911, the police arriving, tv stations arriving, some perv at the playground who mustve been watching your son, all the horrible images of something terrible having happened play out in your mind in what feels like hours but really only is seconds or a minute.

You begin screaming his name in a pitch you didn't know your voice had.

Your voice is shaking and by now you too are also shaking and you begin to sweat and you're running all around looking everywhere and nowhere and now you're screaming his name (and honestly while I write this I cry because the feeling is just so horrible to relive) and people are now starting to look and all you can think is where is he, he was here just a second ago!

Your heart and entire chest seem to be leaping from your body and your head begins to pound because now you cannot find your child anywhere.

God please don't let another minute go by, where is my son!? Please God help me find him please God let nothing happen to him, I beg of you.

No one even remotely resembling him is anywhere.

No one even remotely resembling anyone you even know is anywhere, so they can't even help you. And now you're becoming desperate.

And then he bounds in from whereever he was, smiling and as happy as a clam, and you see him and it takes everything inside of you to not start screaming at him for leaving and/or breaking down into a heap and crying on the playground.

You just hug him and say, "Don't ever leave Mommy like that again, ok? Do you understand me? Never ever do that, ok?" And he nods and says ok and has absolutely no idea why you look this upset, nor does he even understand what he just agreed to. Because he is three.

All you know is you got a second chance.

And you thank God for watching.

And you hold yourself together until no one is looking and when you get home you go into the bathroom and lose it and sob like a baby.

Because what could have been still runs through your mind and rips your heart out just thinking about it.

It's just one of the millions of tiny heart attacks you will have while being a parent.

I still don't know where he went off to or for how long because time just stood still. All I know is that he came back.

And I've never been so scared in my life.

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