PREAMBLE: It’s always a bit strange for me to blog when crazy/scary shit is going on in the news. I’ve struggled with whether I should acknowledge stuff like the Boston marathon bombings, the Sandy Hook shootings, and many others, because in some ways, it feels like a dick move to just write like nothing’s going on. And yes, I get that terrible shit is going on all the time, but hopefully you’re smart and understanding enough to get what I mean. Right now, a lot of people I care about, including one of my BFFs of all time, are being affected by the flooding in Southern Alberta. I’m hoping that this will provide maybe even just one laugh during what has been and will continue to be a rough week. Thinking of you all. x
I was quiet and focused when I started to hear what I thought was my mom calling my name. Her voice was muffled and muted by a great distance, so I couldn’t be sure. I mentally shrugged my shoulders and continued with the task at hand.
In the meantime, I’m sure my mom was having an anxiety attack, since I inherited my mom’s anxiety and it’s the intense kind. She had only left me for a couple minutes and I had vanished. She noticed something was wrong when she became acutely aware of the silence, which didn’t happen often in my house when I was a kid.
“Andrea?” she said, holding her breath to listen for me.
She looked out the back window – had I gone to play in the yard without asking her? She rushed down the stairs into the basement to check there.
“Andrea?” she called again, her heart rate increasing. She ran back up the stairs and out the back door, her eyes frantically but thoroughly scanning the backyard, strip by strip.
At this point, I could hear my mom, and was sure she was calling me. But I was inside and she was outside, so she wouldn’t be able to hear my response. I tried anyway.
I couldn’t see her from where I was. I shrugged – for real this time – and got on with it.
By this time, my mom was officially freaking out. She started to do the math of how far away from the house I could have gotten in five to seven minutes of time. And, because she’s a worrier (again, I know this because I inherited it), I’m sure she was also wondering about any or all of the following:
- Would I know how to tell someone my phone number, parents’ names, etc. if I were found by a stranger?
- Would I even talk to the stranger, or just avoid them all together?
- Would I know the difference between a good stranger and a bad stranger?
- Was I even wearing shoes?
- What if someone stopped their car and KIDNAPPED me before anyone else could find me?
- Would I know to say no to the tainted snacks offered to me by the crazy child-poisoner who was probably on the loose, even though they looked delicious and I loved eating snacks?
SIDENOTE: The answers to those questions, in order, are…
- I would talk.
- Most definitely.
- Probably not.
- I wouldn’t have gotten into the car willingly, so I would have had to have been grabbed.
- No. I would eat them and I would die. Everyone loves snacks. Especially chubby preschoolers.
There was only one way I could have gone: out the front door. My mom – probably sweating even though she like, never sweats (I hate her for it) – slipped her shoes on as quickly as possible, threw the front door open, and ran about halfway down our front sidewalk, yelling my name.
“Andrea?” she said to the left. “ANDREA?!” she said to the right.
While my mom was officially freaking out, I was officially entering “what the heck is your problem?” territory. I decided enough was enough.
I grabbed the door handle and pulled the bathroom door open as far as it would go – probably about six or eight inches – before it hit my knees. I squished my face into the gap and saw the back of my mom, standing outside, shouting my name like a crazy person.
She turned around and spotted me.
Yes, that’s right, I was sitting on the toilet, taking care of business.
“Andrea!!!” my mom threw her arms into the air as she rushed down the hall toward me, “You need to answer me when I call you! Oh my god. Oh my god! I was about to call the police!”
“I’m sorry.” I choked back tears. I feel like if you’re a human, you cry when your mom cries or looks like she’s about to cry or gets really upset or scared. It just happens.
That was the day I learned – you guessed it – to answer my mom when she called me, lest she have a full-on call-the-FBI-freakout.
P.S. If you want to donate to the victims of the Southern Alberta floods, many of whom have lost their homes and all of their material possessions, please visit the Red Cross website to do so.