Almost daily diary!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

In which Small Sprog was lost....

I took this picture of the Tate Gallery in St Ives in Cornwall last weekend. I have been whinging on about going for years! However it's vicinity (adjacent to the beach) means that as soon as we arrive there is a crisis. Beach...art...beach..art...hmmm, which would you have chosen when you were small? So, yes you've guessed it, they win every time. I have, in the past, muttered about going in by myself but for some reason this seems to cause great offence to all of them. I am expected to enjoy their company on the beach (which I do, would, will....just a little look? NO).
Anyway, last weekend was freeeezing, so although the beach looked great, and was for a while, everyone agreed that it would be warmer in the gallery (yippee). Tall Girl and Husband hopped up the stairs way before I got there with Small Sprog who was still digging, dog style, on the beach. After de-sanding him, Small Sprog and I crossed the road just in time to see Tall Girls head peep up over the curved wall at the top. Small Sprog screamed with excitement and ran on ahead, not up the steps but the ramp walkway on the right. As I brought up the rear a woman stopped me and asked if I knew the way in. 'It's just up here' I gestured.
'We've tried up there but we can't get through the door' she replied.
Well, seeing as Husband had not reappeared with Tall Girl and Sprog, I kept walking up the steps saying that I was sure this was the way in. At the top I pulled the handle and the glass door opened. The woman was directly behind me. 'It didn't open when I tried it' she said.
'Perhaps they didn't like the look of you' I replied without thinking! I was joking of course but I don't think she got it. Even more embarrassing though was that Husband (who was waiting in the foyer) immediately greeted the woman (quite warmly) and I realised he knew her! She was one of his customers who lives here in Bristol. (I'm bound to bump into her again, probably when doing something stupid in a supermarket.)
Anyway after the confusion (polite introductions, smiles and hasty retreats -mine -) I noticed Small Sprog was not bouncing (that's how he is most of the time). Tall Girl was loitering hoping no one would speak to her and husband was trying to explain the ins and outs of his customer base to me when.....'Where is he?' I say. At that moment I realised he was not in the building. I turned around to look out of the glass door through which I'd come and there was Small Sprog, mouth wide open (I couldn't hear his cries through the glass), in hopeless distress and panic. He couldn't see us through the glass door and had been running around and around looking for us all this time. I flew through the door, back out into the cold, and swept him up into my arms, kissing and kissing and wiping his tears 'Where have you been? Don't worry, mummy wouldn't leave you' I sooth.
He was very upset. We hauled him inside and he was unusually subdued. He was obviously in shock, so we took him up to the cafe for a Hot Chocolate with marshmallows and a Chocolate Brownie (the equivalent of hot sweet tea!). It did the trick and he 'bounced' back. (By the way the Tate was as good as I'd hoped!)
Tonight after we put him to bed he came downstairs. 'I'm frightened but I'm not sure what I'm frightened of' he said. I can remember feeling like that as a child, still do sometimes, so I took him back upstairs and lay down on the bed beside him. After shuffling about a bit he rested his head on my shoulder and I put my cheek on his head. He held my hand and slipped into sleep. I lay there for a while. Not because I was afraid of waking him but just enjoying his stillness. His curly hair felt so soft against my cheek and his small warm hand so precious. I savoured the moment. My lovely boy.

11 comments:

Liz said...

Oh, yes, hang onto it. I remember tucking Elder Son in one night and suddenly he said, 'I love you, mum.' These are the special moments that we need to hang on to and remember when - at some time in the future - you feel like murdering him ...

And that's the sort of comment I make without thinking! And trying to get out of it, dig myself in even deeper.

Maggie May said...

OHhhhhhh! I think we've all done that ..... lost a child. The panic! How awful.
I do LOVE St Ives. Everywhere is very hilly but I love the view from up by the car park. We are usually bombarded by seagulls & Harry had to pay 20p in the toilets just to wash his glasses clean from seagull poop! Must blog about our visit to St Ives!

Suburbia said...

Hi Liz, yes I know what you mean!

Maggie, yes you must blog about St. Ives I can't wait to hear about the seagull poop!!

starnitesky said...

What a wonderful moment, treasure it forever.

You certainly do have some adventures, getting lost (or just misplacing your mum) is very frightening.

Rose said...

I remember "losing" each of my children in the mall when they were young. It was the most frightening moment of my life. And I felt so guilty--I would do anything to protect them from the evils of the world, and here I turn to look at a lovely pair of shoes or whatever and they're gone! Fortunately, these experiences all had happy endings as did yours. Oh yes, enjoy those precious moments of stillness.

And I do hope Maggie blogs about the seagull poop, too!

Singing Bear said...

Love the Tate, love St. Ives, love Cornwall, love Bristol (of course!).

Nice blog.

BS5 Blogger said...

Hi there Domestic Blogess - what a delightful post! I am a single bloke and I have no kids so I have only really lost phones, keys, pens, wallets and that sort of thing but I really 'got' your post! I recall losing my mum on several occasions when I was a little chap and she was always a welcome sight when I met her again (well, after the obligatory bollocking, anyway).

Akelamalu said...

Oh losing a child is the most terrifying thing, poor little one.

I've been there as far as making the comment you truly wish you hadn't! ;#

Suburbia said...

Hi BS5 and welcome!
I tried to avoid the bollocking because it seems so sad to tell them off when they're so upset already!

Hi Akelamalu
My mouth will get me into trouble one day!

Hi Rose. Mmmmm nice shoes, always a distraction!

Me too Singing Bear!

Juanuchis said...

Poor Sprog and poor you! How scary it must have been. I can just imagine his coming down to you in his jammies, and you soothing him. :)

I escaped suburbia, thank God. We live back in the hollers of West Virginia, with the occasional meth lab in the environs and busted-down trailers all over. But if I want to crowd my yard with 100 pink flamingoes, I can!

Nice to meet you!

Suburbia said...

Juanuchis, welcome and please call again.