Have you ever been lost in chaos? People flying by, walking fast, never slow. Have you ever been lost in general? Feeling clueless as to what you should do and ending up deciding that running is the only thing you can do while your heart is racing exponentially.
I think we can agree that this has happened to 99% of us. For some, this has happened multiple times. This has happened twice to me and as it may be for you too, both time I was a young child. It can be quite scary and worrisome for you and your loved ones. Now, how many of you have had this happen to you at a fair? I can tell you right now, that was my first and worse experience with getting lost.
I was at the fair and I was just merely eight years old or so and I don’t remember how it necessarily happened, but I remember staring off at another booth with many pretty, polished accessories and that’s where I went wrong.
We were at a corn dog station, getting some corn dogs, of course. When my attention was drawn to some shiny necklaces, rings, and bracelets only about twenty or so feet away. It had distracted me so much that I ended up turning around and they were gone. My mother and brother were just gone and it scared me senseless.
You see, my mom when an officer had later returned me to her, had mentioned that she clearly told me where to go if I were to get lost. We had a meeting spot, but I never recalled her telling me to meet them there. I must have gotten so scared that my brain decided to just go into overdrive of worrying and not thinking straight. If I had only managed to calm down rather than running and not letting anyone near me, I could have remembered that.
Keeping that in mind, I have decided when I have kids of my own someday, I will make sure to give them some very clear instructions on what to do in those situations.
First, I will teach them at a young age how to calm themselves down and take some deep breathes. Maybe tell that to find a place that is a little secluded, but not too much so that there will be witnesses if something happens to them. If I had known how to just simply take a three second breathe in and breathe it out for three seconds that could have saved me a bit of time.
Second, I would make it clear as to where our meeting spot would be. I am sure my own mother did well, but this is what I would do. I would show them where to go by showing them what is surrounding that area. Then, after pointing out many things, I would have them walk me to it and make sure they know how to get there.
Now, my memory is faint, but I do believe I may have stopped to see if my family was in that area and when I noticed that they weren’t, I kept running. So, I would tell my child that even if I wasn’t there to stay put and give me time to arrive. I would also tell that that I would be heading there too if something were to happen. If I had just stayed where I was supposed to go and not have freaked out, I would have seen them quite shortly because my mother said she had waited there for a while after realizing I was gone.
Third, I would show them where they should go if they manage to forget where they were supposed to go. At a fair you will always have cops, so I would show my child where the majority are located for when a kid gets lost. Or if you are in a store, there is a help desk or a place the child could go and tell an employee that they are lost and for them to call me or whomever they are with, to the front of the store.
Losing your child and being a lost child is very scary. I hope that you all have a plan for your children or plan to make one when you have one. Too many children go lost each year for parents to not come up with a plan. If you have any suggestions to include in a plan like this or wish to give your own plan, please comment below!