Tuesday, October 5, 2010
I know what Code Blue means having worked in a hospital environment a few years back, but yellow? I was checking out at a local dept. store this afternoon with the alert went out over the PA system. The clerk that was taking my money explained, "it means there is a child lost." Oh, my.
The mother was in shock as she explained. "Her name is Rachel, she has long brown hair and she's two." Every eye in the place started looking down and around, over and under. Store managers rushed to doors that led outside. Another calmed the mother, "there are people in place at every exit, she will not leave this building."
CODE YELLOW! Those are heart stopping words.
Who hasn't lost a child in a store at one time or another? It's so easy! They are so quick! And a mom with only two eyes and NONE of them in the back of her head is severely limited.
Philip got away from me a few times. One particular time, at age 3, he took off and I thought I followed him to the men's restroom. Angrily, I pulled that door open and shouted, "Philip, you come out of there this minute." The guy "standing" with his back to me, simply stated, "lady, there's no one in here by THAT name!"
I found him a few minutes later, hiding in the "circle rack" in the middle of the store. It was a fun game for him, one that he repeated several times after that episode, I was never amused.
Today was a reminder. Precious little ones can disappear in a micro-second. Everyone in that store stopped, time stopped, as the powers that be searched for Rachel. After an eternity of 10 minutes, an elderly grandma looking woman came walking toward the distraught mom with Rachel by the hand.
The "audience" had grown, all of us wondering what would happen next. Mom picked her up and held her extra close as Rachel smiled a wide grin. She was not at all afraid or frightened. She knew where she was all along! It was a happy ending and life resumed for the rest of us.
It DOES take a village to keep an eye on children. It's good for moms to unite, to be very aware of where those little buggers are at all times, probably more so when they get to be teens than when they are two!
Two year olds wander off by accident, teen-agers wander away intentionally. Both have to be reeled back into the fold.
Having spent today with Andy, watching him speak to the teenagers of Enid, OK. I am SO aware that we are watching a generation of young people wandering away intentionally. Andy describes today's teen culture as a "cess pool" Morals are not what they used to be! Pressure to be grown up, savvy, popular, and yes, rebellious, is staggering. And the decisions they are contemplating now WILL affect how they view themselves and their world when they are forty. They don't believe that, but it is proven to be true.
I want to shout, " PARENTS... CODE YELLOW....CODE YELLOW!" Little big ones are confused and need a responsible adult to help them find their way home. It's time for us parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, coaches, teachers, pastors and employers to take our eyes off ourselves and step up to the plate and hunt them down. They're so worth it!