Saturday, May 17, 2008

Annals of parenting - forgetting a kid

I'm far from a perfect parent, so I'm the last person who would sit by and tsk-tsk another parent for some supposed failure to be more like Mrs. Brady or Mrs. Cleaver. But sometimes I come across a story that just makes me want to go "huh?"

To wit, this piece from CanWest earlier this week: Parents forget toddler at airport.

I dunno. But I suspect I'd know if one of my kids wasn't with me on a long trip. It's not like losing a pair of nail clippers, y'know. Munchkins - especially 18-month-olds like this one - tend to be a bit noisier than carry-on luggage.

Thankfully this had a happy ending.

Your turn: Ever forget something really important in a public place? How did everything end up?

16 comments:

... Paige said...

No I can't say that I have. But after my son was born I had this absolute fear, phobia if you will, that I would leave him in the shopping basket at the grocery store. Never did forget him on any of my children, but for some weird reason I was paranoid about it anyway.

allisonsays.com said...

Like you, I try not to shake my finger at other parents. Who am I to judge? But sometimes you do witness or hear about things that make it really, really, hard not to judge.

I couldn't even fathom leaving behind a child. Personally, I find it incredibly difficult to take an infant/toddler through the airport, so when it suddenly became easy that would be quite a hint.

I've never left anything incredibly important in a public place. Umbrellas, sure. I even once left my purse at a restaurant. But nothing like that!

Hilary said...

You found perspective.. and something tells me it's not for the first time.. not even close. :)

D.O.M. Dan said...

I personally have not left behind something so precious, but my parents once left my little sister at a McDonald's restaurant. Each parent, who drove separately, thought the other had her, and it was an oversight in the confusion of also taking my little league baseball team to celebrate after our first (and only) win. All ended well: she was not alone long.

Hilary said...

Oops.. that comment was supposed to appear with your "What Lies Beneath" post.. where hopefully it makes more sense. ;)

Evey said...

A really long time ago when my oldest brother was a baby, so like 36 years ago or so. My mom (in Scotland) had walked with him in his stroller down to the post office. She left the sttroller with him in it outside as she went in to do what she came for. Back then leaving your child out front of a store was not unheard of. When she came out she immdediately headed home to make herself some tea and relax. It wasn't till she was sitting down about to sip her tea she remembered my brother. She ran to the post office and there he was stillsound alseep none the wiser. heehee

Lee Ann said...

I wonder what is going through the parent's mind when they forget their child somewhere!
It is really hard to believe.

Have a great weekend!
~xo
Lee Ann

Miz UV said...

It happened to us. We were taking both kids and a set of grandparents to a show. Very crowded and hectic in the waiting area, and hubby and I ended up not next to each other. I had the baby and thought my husband had our four year old, but he thought both were with me. As we were seated, we realized what happened and he ran back to the lobby and got the other one. Really scary, but it can happen.

Sara said...

I don't remember leaving anything that precious anywhere!!!!

They are just lucky that the Air Canada people were nice enough to change diapers and feed him...

Greg Fowler said...

I can't say that I ever forgot one of my kids (although I may have been tempted a time or two). But I did leave my laptop behind in a coffee shop once. OMG, the panic as I rushed back expecting the worst! TG one of the employees had spotted it and put it behind the counter for me. Lucky for me it wasn't a Timmie's, or being that nice to a customer might have been against the store policy.

Michael Manning said...

Carmi: How devastating! I do not have any examples that come to mind, but my strict European parents kept us close by in public places as if we were on a leash. When we were coming back from Bulgaria, my father saved a toddler from possibly having his fingers cut off while boarding a Down Escalator. I can still see Dad rushing with arms filled with our bags towards the youngster. Their parents were relieved as we were! In today's crazed world where every parent ought to read "Tears of Rage" by John Walsh, I am today grateful for my parent's paying attention.

R. Sherman said...

Never lost a kid -- although it's not been for want of trying.

:)

BTW and off topic: Happened across your given name as part of the longer text to today's sermon in church. So, I thought about you and realized I needed to pop in to catch up.

Cheers.

photowannabe said...

Yes I have and it gives me heart palpatations thinking about it.
I had just begun traveling for my job and I had a large briefcase and my "fanny pack" with me in a taxi in Atlanta Georgia.
The pack had my airline tickets, money, credit card etc. (my life!) I thought it was over my arm when I got out of the taxi and went into the hotel. When I went to get something out of the "purse" I realized it was still in the taxi who knows where. I ran back down to the entrance and saw a slue of cars but I hadn't really looked at the number of the cab or the gentleman driving it. By process of elimnation and another very helpful cab driver believe it or not we found the taxi and my black bag on the floor of it, just where it had fallen. I have never been so grateful and both men got a nice tip for their help.

Bob-kat said...

Nope. I was always forgetting umbrellas and then remembering them when I got wet when I was younger though!

My dad once forgot me when I was a baby. He left me outside the chemist parked in my pram (as was common practice in the UK back then) and then walked home without me. When my mum asked him where the baby was he replied 'what baby>'. Huh! The irony: he went to get baby milk for me!

lissa said...

Brings to mind 2 great films, one recent, one classic. Little Miss Sunshine's famous scene where Olive is left at the gas station. The way in which they retrieved this easy-going child had me cracking up.

Then there's the scene in Fiddler on the Roof where - amidst tears - Tevye delivers a chuckle. After Chava returns to tell her family she and her husband are also leaving Anatevka, and after the poignancy of Tevye's finally acknowledging her, he gets into Commanding Mode, telling everyone what they need to do in order to leave fast, ending with, "Tzeitel! Don't forget the baby!"

I was never forgotten - I was the type to get busy somewhere in the vicinity and wander off. But that was entirely my fault; the parental units always did the searching! And either I'm a model parent or my kids make it awfully tough to forget them - I've never done so.

But I've read horror stories of parents who have - including last year's shocker where a father parked at a metro station, took the metro to work and came back to find his child dead in the carseat - heated car, all day long...father forgot to bring the child to daycare before going to work. I cannot even IMAGINE such a thing...

Catherine said...

I seem to remember a story in the Bible about Jesus' parents who both thought he was with the other one...
I think it is quite common for mothers of new babies to forget the baby while it is sleeping, and just pop out for an errand or two, then suddenly remember they've left the baby at home alone in its cot. The airport sounds a bit more remarkable, though.