I love to write and can usually write about just about anything. But this topic – “Write about a time you were really scared” stumped me all day…until now. I figured out that my struggle was actually one with vocabulary. You see, I think there is a huge difference between the word fearful and the word scared. I have been fearful on several occasions. I was fearful when my Dad was diagnosed with cancer. I was fearful when I had a tubal pregnancy. I was fearful when I was told there was no way medically that we could have children. I was fearful when I was called for retests on two separate suspicious mammograms. I try to take my fears directly to God because they usually deal with a faith battle concerning my trust in God for my future.
I can honestly say that there have been few occasions when I have been really scared. Sure, the occasional sound in the night or the near accident on the highway have caused that rise of adrenaline and racing heart. I don’t watch scary movies and I try never to put myself in dangerous situations.
But sometimes, no matter how careful you are, something happens that scares the very life out of you. It was a beautiful afternoon and I had gone to my hometown with my precious little 2 year old, red-headed daughter, Lauren, to visit my mom. We decided to run down to the fabric store and look around. My hometown is a very small, quiet, safe place to live. We were laughing and talking and shopping in the tiny fabric store. Then I noticed that I didn’t see or hear her. I wasn’t worried but called her name calmly and started looking around a little bit – no Lauren. My heart started to race. Mom noticed my anxiety and began to search with me. I looked everywhere. My voice became louder and a little desperate. We were the only ones in the store. I found the store clerk and asked if Lauren was with her. When her answer was no, I was scared – Really scared. I asked the worker if there was a back storage area. We headed to the back and there were the double doors of the loading dock standing wide open. I have NEVER had that feeling nor do I ever want to have it again. Sheer terror. My baby was gone! I ran our the doors to see if I could see a person or a car, any clue as to what had happened to my baby girl. I ran back inside to use the store phone to call the police. Then I hear this little voice. “Mommy”…..I heard it coming from somewhere in the store. “Mommy, you didn’t find me,” she said as she peeked out from under one of the fabric shelves. Her big blue eyes sparkled as her red curls bobbed up and down. You see, there was a storage area for extra fabric under each cabinet and she found it to be the perfect place for a little game of hide-and-go-seek. The problem is, she didn’t invite me to play. Of course I cried and Mom cried and I think even the store clerk cried. Lauren couldn’t figure out why we were so emotional about one of our favorite games.
Many parents experience this same terror with a different outcome. Life can so quickly be snatched away. I thought our first little miracle baby had been taken away from me. I thought our 1 in a million chance of a child was about to become a statistic. And those of you who have not had this experience, yes, you think all of those things in a matter of a minute. Praise God that my story had a happy ending. We always have told our girls that they are a precious gift from God. But that day, and many days following, I held her a little closer, gazed at her a little longer, and thanked God for her a little more fervently. I also prayed more genuinely for all the parents who were waiting to hear the voice of their precious child again.
This post has brought those memories back and wrapped them around my heart. As you have come to the end of this post would you please stop and pray that a child will be found and well this very moment. May we never forget that, as we are experiencing blessings beyond measure with our children, other are scared to death that they will never see their children again. Pray for them today.