I had one of those moments this morning, one of those awful moments that puts everything into crystal clear perspective, at least for as long as the adrenaline is pumping. Maybe I’m writing it down just to try and process it, since it’s been two and a half hours and I can still feel my heart racing. I know sighted parents have these moments too, when they look up from examining something in a store and don’t see their kids where they were ten seconds before, or when an ambulance goes screaming by and they glance around to make sure their little ones are safe. But I think this one might have happen because I couldn't see what was going on and so my mind filled in the terrible details.
My little girl was riding her three-wheeled Barbie scooter on the sidewalk in front of our townhouse. I went inside just for a minute or two when nature’s call refused to be ignored. Then I walked back out onto the porch and called for my daughter to come get her stuff so her dad could take her to school. She didn’t answer. I stepped down off the porch and yelled louder, since my bum knee has been slowing me down and I didn’t want to walk back out to where I had left her loading up her scooter with rocks and pine cones under a tree in the neighbor’s front yard so she could bring me the “mail” again. She still didn’t answer. She’s supposed to stay on the straight sidewalk that runs in front of our building when she’s riding her bike or scooter unless someone is with her. I had heard a big truck in the parking lot one house over from mine, and as I yelled again, it began to make the familiar noises of a trash truck. I started screaming out my daughter's name, because just for that split second, my mind had me convinced that the sanitation driver hadn’t seen her on her scooter, and she was mashed under that truck. I don’t even remember running down the sidewalk toward the dumpster, although my knee is now reminding me that I did it. And there she was with her dad, who had just driven up to take her to school, both of them wondering why I was racing toward them, hysterical. Dad thinks she didn’t hear me calling because of the truck. I’m not sure if she didn’t hear or just decided not to answer. But after they left, I sobbed my way through an oversized cup of coffee, two miniature Kit-Kat bars, and one mini-bag of Peanut M&M’s from the Halloween haul, rattled by what didn’t happen but could have, or what felt for a second like it really happened even though it didn’t.
I guess I’m telling this because I’m still seriously behind with my work, my house is still strewn with toys from one end to the other, my credit card is still maxed out, I still don’t know how the election will tturn out tomorrow or what I’m going to make for supper tonight—but my daughter didn’t get squashed by a fearsome but perfectly innocent trash truck. It’s a good day.
Answer by kmath at 7:53 PM on Nov. 5, 2012
Answer by NotUrKidsBestie at 5:53 PM on Nov. 5, 2012
Answer by louise2 at 6:12 PM on Nov. 5, 2012
Answer by wendythewriter at 6:33 PM on Nov. 5, 2012
Answer by robyann at 9:41 PM on Nov. 5, 2012
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