Ok, he is safe and did make a bad choice to go hang out with a friend without telling me.
To give the details now that I have time to sit and type, he should have been home by 4pm from school. I don't get home from work until between 5:00 and 5:30pm. It was unusual for him not to be home, but I didn't think much of it. I figured he had came home and then decided to go back out somewhere around the neighborhood. He is typically a homebody, but when he ventures out he does not go far. I figured he would be home soon for dinner and I would get onto him for not leaving a note and telling me where he was at or calling.
Well, I went ahead and got dinner ready for the ladies I take care of had to do some things to provide their care. He still wasn't home. That is when I called the number he left for me just in case he was doing some function with the school. This was around 6pm. It seemed to be the teachers extension at the school. No answer. I called the school's main number. No answer. I decided to go check the few places he does go. No one home at the main friend's house. No one at the school. No one at the convenience store. Drove around the neighborhood. Nothinhg. So, I went and sat home for a little bit wondering where to go from there and contemplating how this is so unlike him. I talked to his dad a bit. Talked to the other kids to see if they could think of anything. We were all just stumped.
At first I was getting really angry with him because I just knew he decided to go somewhere without telling me, but I started letting my thoughts get the best of me and started to worry. I drove around the neighborhood again and still nothing. I came home and told the other two boys to get on their bikes and go check anywhere tht they could think of that was close. The sun was starting to go down, but it wasn't dark yet. The panic feeling was starting to set in.That is when I made my first post on CM. I needed to get my thoughts out because I just didn't know what to think. I was pulling together my plan of action. Having older boys, I know there is always a point where they either decide they are big enough to stay out without telling anyone or they just simply forget, so I was trying to hold myself together.
So, I went back out looking for him and started spending longer at each likely location. i was looking for any kid activity or hoping he may see my car and realize I was looking for him.
We live just a block away from the school grounds. So, there are no buses or anything involved.
Anyway, while I was out driving around in circles, I realized at some point a cop came and parked in the parking lot of his school. I didn't know if he was parked there because something was going on or if he was just taking a break or what. So, I pulled over and explained to him that my son had been missing all evening and that we had not seen him. I told him that this was very unlike him and since it was starting to get so late that we were worried. He asked me if he may have ran away and I told him that is the last thing I would think. I told them that overall he is a really good kid, but I really think he went to hang out somewhere and didn't let us know. I told him if it wasn't that, then something bad has happened to him because I know he wouldn't run away.
He took a bunch of info. About that time, another cop drove by and he signaled for the other cop to come over. He gave the other cop the info and asked him if he could go to our home and search it just to make sure he wasn't there. Of course, I knew he wasn't.
Then we ended up going back to my house and all meeting up there. My son does not take his cell with him and is notorious for letting the battery go dead. I had tried calling it and knew he didn't have it. They asked us to locate the cell phone just to make sure it was in the house because if he had it, they could ping it and get a GPS location. We found the cell in the house. No good there.
They then asked me to get in the cop car and show them where the one friend lived that he does go visit. This is the one in which no one had been home earlier. So, as we pulled up, the parents were pulling in. The cops followed them up to the home and they went in. I think they were checking to make sure my son wasn't in the house with the friend. (That is when I took the pic since so many were saying I wasn't looking for him or making it all up. I was just sitting there waiting for them to come back out.) They came back out and the parents of the other boy had said that the boys had went to the grocery store that is pretty far down the road and had been hanging out there. So, their son had told them where they would be, but mine didn't. :( The one cop I was with called to the other cop to go down to the store to see if he could locate them while he gained more info from the parents. I guess they had taken bikes from that house to ride down there.
Pretty soon, the cop called back and said he had spotted them riding back, so we headed that way and met up with them. My son got a good talking to by the police officer and by me right there.
My son admitted to not telling me where he was going to be. He said he was planning on being home by 9. I knew 9 was the key time and that if he wasn't home by then that something had happened to him. My kids have never been allowed to stay out past 9 (unless they were spending the night somewhere) and that is a long standing rule. He admitted that he knew he was going to be in trouble for not letting me know where he was.
Anyway, I have a horrible headache right now from being so stressed out. I haven't even eaten anything yet and it is almost 10:30. But, he is safe and in big time trouble. He has never ever done anything like this before and I am going to make sure it doesn't happen again. He really hates to disappoint people and when I get upset about something, it hits him pretty hard. I don't know what he was thinking. Darn teenagers.
(For those that don't know which son I am referring to, he is the one on the left in this video. He is a super good, sweet kid. He spends time volunteering several times a year at the Ronald McDonald House. He has never done anything wrong. I don't know what got into him.)