I thought I lost her.
My little girl. I thought I lost her.
We’re visiting family for the weekend. Headed to higher ground where the snow is deeper and the sledding is faster. The twins had been sledding all day and after dinner were at it for round 396. X-Man came inside just as I was buttoning up the little Beastie’s snow suit and slipping on my boots. Lil’ Girl was on the front porch.
And then she wasn’t.
I carted the babe outside and hubby followed. I pulled X-Man on my lap and we went flying down the hill. I thought she’d be at the bottom. Thought she’d taken one of the sleds for a solo run and would be there, in her neon pink, a grin spread across her rosy cheeks.
But she wasn’t.
It’s dark down there, at the bottom of the hill. the trees are thick and the bushes mark a path that winds back and forth over the ground and then skirts the creek. The creek with the thin layer of ice and the frozen water that churns beneath. They know not to go near the creek. They know. But….
She wasn’t at the bottom. Trudging back up the hill, the snow heavy on my boots and my breath bursts of clouds against my cheeks, I watched for her. No pink. No giggle. No sneaky Lil’ Girl. At the top of the hill I did a quick scan. All sleds were accounted for. We yelled for her to come out of her hiding spot, but received no reply.
Inside we did a quick search and came up empty. Back into the cold Hubby and I went. Our flashlights ricochet off the snow banks as the drifts climbed higher up our legs. We split up and took different paths, following any trail that may have been recent.
At first I wasn’t worried. At ;first I just thought she was playing. Being sneaky. Giving us all a fright and then she’d pop out and say “Boo!”. But the mountains returned only my voice and the echo of her name. I started to panic. My flashlight bounced and my eyes searched for pink. For brown hair among the branches. I followed tracks that wound around, in and out of the bushes. Through the field and skirted the creek. I prayed.
Jesus help me find my little girl.
The tracks ended a foot from the edge of the water. She couldn’t be there. Please God let her not be there.
I circled back around, searching for more tracks, but I’d followed them all. Then, from the top of the hill Hubby called my name. I got her.
Thank you God. She’s home. She’s safe.
I stopped at the top of the hill to catch my breath then went to the house. Hubby stepped outside and told me he’d found her, feet from where I’d been earlier. She’d had an accident and was embarrassed to come out. But she was safe.
It is amazing what the body will do. How it will safeguard you until the limit is met and exceeded. She was fine, but I was not. He held me as I sobbed tears of relief-thankful that she was back. Unharmed. Safe.
Brush the tears away.
Thank you Jesus. She’s safe.