Friday, June 19, 2009

Terrifying 40 minutes

I am not the type to become overemotional or irrational at the drop of a hat. When one of my kids are screaming and blood is dripping from whereever, I remain calm. Their screaming, they're breathing. It's been nearly 10 years that I've had children and I cannot recall a moment like the one I experienced this afternoon. It was terrifying. In these 10 years I have never lost any of my children before. I think that's pretty good, but my winning streak ended this afternoon.

I took Gavin and Brig's to the San Tan Mall. It's an outside mall divided up by streets. There is one rectangular section that primarily focuses on children. We went and played in the fountain for a while. Then we headed to the toddler play area, next to the older play area. After about an hour or so we went and bought an ice cream cone. Walked through the pet store, Disney store, Build-a-bear and Children's Place. We were walking back to the car when a "60% off" sign at Gymboree caught my eye. I am still looking for an adorable blessing outfit for baby boy #6. So we went in. Gavin stayed in the front of the small store where there were toys and flip flops on clearance. I headed to the back of the store where infant clothing was located. I was there no longer than a minute. They had nothing close to what I was searching for. I turn around and Gavin is gone. I headed outside thinking he's playing on the playground equipment or back in the fountain. Nothing. I turn and head next door to the pet store. Nothing. I am not freaking out. I am still calm, but moving more quickly. I start heading into each of the stores. Nothing. How can this be? If any child attempted to leave this small little rectangular area, someone would stop them. They would have to cross the street to head over to other parts of the mall. Other parts we never go to. Then I remember I just watched that 48 hours special of that cute little boy who was abducted for 4 years. FOUR YEARS! My heart drops and tears started falling to the ground. It hit me. I lost my baby doll.

It had been about 25 minutes of my effortless searching. I went into a store and had them call Security for me. Security arrived and sent out a blast email to all the stores with a description of Gavin. The police were called and were there in a few minutes. Two things kept running through my mind. What a terrible mom I was that I looked away and allowed my precious boy to be lost. And two, if he wasn't in any of these stores, he must have been taken. As I am relaying this story to the police, they ask me several questions about Gavin. Then she asks, "What's his name?" Again, I break down and force out "G-G-G-avin".

I felt helpless. Humiliated. And so sad. Again, the security people went through all the stores and still nothing. I frantically text Scott and he is on his way. I'm not sure what he can do, but comfort a terrible mom. I lost his son. I lost my sweet Gavin. My eyes never stopped panning around the play areas, and fountain area where I was standing in front of. They needed a new picture of him. I had just taken several as the boys were eating their ice cream cones. Was this going to be the last picture I have of him?

I look up and see a young employee of Build-a-Bear walking hand-in-hand with my Gavin. I ran over to him, crying like a baby, scooped him up in my arms and hugged him tight. The lady said he'd been in the store for a while but he was playing with another little girl and her mom. She got the announcement, but Gavin was with them. So, she didn't think much more about it. I looked in that store 2-3 times. The security guards went through that store 2-3 times. How did we miss him? Gavin walked up to the register and handed the lady a bear he'd made and dressed. She looked at the woman next to him and asked, "Will this be all?" She began to explain he was not hers. They started asking Gavin where his mommy was. "I dunno." They asked him his name, but couldn't understand him until he said, "you spell it with a G!" :) He then explained to the lady that his mom was outside with her baby waiting. Well, kinda.

I kept hugging him, and kissing him. He is such a sweet and wonderful little kid. Gavin keeps kissing me back and telling me not to cry that everything is ok.
I went through that whole ordeal, without having a single contraction. Pretty surprising.

We're home. He's safe. And man, am I thankful how things turned out.


Alissa said...

Oh you poor thing!!!! I have lost Claira before in Walmart for about 25 minutes and the tears were flowin' freely trust me! I'm pretty impressed that you've gone 10 years before losing a child! Nice record! HUGS! How scary! Glad Gavin is safe:)

Angie B said...

Sweets! I am so glad our little Gavin is safe and that you are not in the hospital! Oh my there is not sicker more helpless feeling!!!! We love you and hope you are ok...obviously Gav is, build-a-bear with out any interuption for 40 minutes! At least you know he was having your expense! xoxo

Clarissa Jo Baxter said...

that is the scariest thing ever!!! im so glad you guys are okay.

Summer Spillane Jordan said...

oh my goodness! you poor thing! that's too cute that he made a bear though! so glad he's safe and sound...and you're still breathing! so terrifying. you're a good're a good're a good mom!

Mamathom and Papathom said...

I am sure thankful that I did not know about this when it happened. My heart would have stopped and at my age, might not have started again. Glad everything turned out okay. LOVE YOU GUYS