Me and the boys (husband, son, brother-in-law) went to the mall Friday. As we were walking through the mall and through the store to get our vehicle, a little boy zoomed pass us, and immediately my instincts kicked in! I heard him say, "Mom!" and as I ran to see where he was, he had ran outside and I didn't see mom or anyone around him, so I ran to him and said "Come back in the store sweetheart, where is your Mom?" He said, "I don't know, I lost her". I hurried him to the customer service desk and his little hands were sweating and to see the fear in his eyes just yanked at my heart.
He held my hand tight as I explained to the store personnel that he had lost his mom. I asked him his age and he responded with "6 and I have a little brother". We looked high and low for Mom and for the life of me, I could not figure out why I didn't hear a woman screaming for her child. The entire mall would have known I was looking for Kaleb. As we went upstairs (because he said he came down stairs looking), he said "THE PET STORE...WE WERE IN THE PET STORE!" Our mall has a pet store...I know I know what a place to shop for pets. So, me and the boys and two of the store personnel walked towards the pet store. Now, security had already been called at this point. I did not just want to leave the little boy in the hand of strangers (even though I was a stranger) but I knew my intentions were good for him. As we turned the corner and passed another store, we saw her. His Mom. It is like her life had been sucked from her.
She shook our hands and thanked us. The little boy hugged me and said "Thank you" and we departed. When I turned back, mall security was questioning her and her son and my hope was that they could just go home in peace from there.
What amazed me is that neither my husband nor my brother-in-law heard when the little boy yelled "Mom!", but I heard it so loud and clear. I cannot imagine what would have happened had I not been there when he went outside. We constantly teach Kaleb safety measures in case we ever get separated. Even at Disney World before we set foot on the park, I made him recite our phone numbers/names, we all had the same exact color shirts on, and I put a red cap on his head as an eye-catcher. I told him if he is ever lost to run to the nearest employee or cop.
When we have our babies, they will be taught the same procedures. I urge you to teach your kids how to respond in case they are lost at a mall or park or anywhere. It only take a split second.