There’s this huge news story going on right now… a two year old boy is missing. Most likely he’s in some deep woods in Tennessee. He slipped away from his grandma and no one has seen him since. He disappeared a week ago. I can’t help but get sucked up into the story like it’s a vortex. I found myself frequently checking for updates as the days, hours, minutes go by. My attention was, is drawn in deep. I read the stories and comments. I never gave my opinion on anything even though theories play out in my mind. My emotions tug and pull. The horror of a lost, cold, small child eats at my heart.
Then there was this afternoon…
3:10 pm and the school bus hadn’t rolled up yet.
By 3:15 pm I’ve got the creeps. No intuition kicking into over drive yet, but my mind started to race.
3:20 pm Snoochie’s bus should have stopped at the house by now. I’m trying to remember what Snoochie wore to school today. My description would be “A girl with bright blew eyes, a leopard spotted jacket in blue tones, and crazy, curly brown hair”.
3:25 And I decide if she doesn’t come home by the time Bobo’s and Deedee’s bus drops them off I am officially beginning the frantic search. The first 24 hours are crucial!
At 3:30 the school bus stops in front of the house. Deedee and Bobo saunter in the house at their usual arrival time. Snoochie was 20 minutes late. Her bus driver forgot to stop at the house before he went to the middle school to reload the bus with more homeward bound students. She was home though. That’s what matters. I can squish her with hugs. I can kiss her cheeks til they’re red. I can tell her “I love you” one more time. I am the luckiest woman alive. I have my baby. She’s safe.
Last night was really cold, below freezing. I turned the heat up so they kids would sleep comfortably. I curled my blanket tightly around me. I don’t see how a 2 year old in a long sleeved shirt and jeans can survive this frigid cold air. Today it hailed and snowed for a short while. I don’t see any chance of survival for a boy lost in the woods in this weather. My heart aches. I don’t know Noah Chamberlin, but I’m terrified for him. Has his parents begun to give up hope? Do they stay faithful and without doubt that they’ll see their little boy again. I’m sorry for what they are going through. I never want to be in their shoes.
One huge comfort I will have tonight is that my fabulous trio is safe and sound with me tonight. I will remember how easily and quickly things can go wrong. I will use this as a stark, fresh reminder that it is always time to live in the moment and cherish life and love with all of my heart. I shall never take a hug for granted.
Update: Today they found the little boy. Unfortunately, it was too late. The past few days have been a mix of wet and cold… I didn’t think it would be possible for the lil’ guy to make it through this with some sort of miracle or divine intervention and sadly, I was right.
My personal opinion on the matter: He died Tuesday night. He had no jacket, no hat, no food, and no water. I think he was a fighter though. I think he managed to survive the first couple of days, but exhaustion took its toll.
Yet again I will go to bed tonight thankful my babies are safe and sound under my roof.