With my neck outstretched and eyes squinting, I stood on my tip-toes and methodically scanned the supermarket, hoping my gaze would once again lock on my daughter. You try to not look alarmed or at all unusual in those moments, as a parent. “Oh hello! Hi! It’s fine … just misplaced my child, nothing to see here … I’ve got it all under control.”
“Elle. Elle? Elle!!” Where did that girl run off to now …
There’s a moment, somewhere in between the initial realization that you’ve temporarily lost sight of your small child and the sigh of relief you experience when you spot them again, when you experience a world of emotions – a lifetime of emotions – in what seems like the blink of an eye: Subtle panic. Mild annoyance. Impatience. Worry. Stress. A rush of blood to the head … This emotionally-charged moment to which I refer is something I live again and again as the mother of two small, curious, busy children, and I suppose it’s just part of the special package deal of parenthood.
I found Elle with her nose squished against a vending machine, ogling the rows upon rows of colorfully wrapped candy bars and sugar-laden treats.
“No, no. Not today, Elle. We’ve still got heaps of Easter candy to work through at home.”
But then fate laughed at me and said, “Ha! Watch this Elle’s Mom!”
“Watch this, Mom!” Elle said. With that, she pushed a button and out came a chocolate bar. And then another one. And another one. And so on and so forth. Continue reading