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Terrifying Day

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SBB posted 2/12/2014 06:29 AM

DD6 went missing for 45m today.

She is gone by the time After School Care (ASC) arrives. They report it to the boss and she recalls a permission slip from me saying DD6 could go to Art Class instead of ASC (never happened). They look for it. They call the sad clown. He says he knows nothing about it. He doesn't call me. He should have.

These two errors (one human, the other - I don't understand) meant 15-30 min gap before ASC boss realises she got the kids mixed up. Calls me apologising - tells me other kids said she went with other friends mum. She and I realise DD6 is missing.

My spider senses go off with this friends mum - I never let DD6 be alone with her. I let her go with her once on Halloween with a parent I do trust - never alone.

I call her 10 times no answer as I'm heading to my car. If DD6 is there I will tear shreds of this mum. The mum calls me and says no - she's not there. Her DD hasn't been to school today because she's sick.

My mind goes to terrible places. I will rip her house apart looking for my child. I will kill her if she is hurting my child.

I'm driving like a maniac trying to get out of the tightest, biggest, busiest carpark in Sydney.

As soon as I have phone reception again I call the sad clown - he still thinks I've made arrangements on his day. I haven't. He realises she is missing. He is on his way.

I call ASC and they say they will go to friends mums house to look for DD6. They're checking the school grounds, the local parks. Everywhere.

Driving fast and trying to be safe and calling every parent I can. No-one has her. I call the police. Terror is setting in.

There's been lots of media lately about the Daniel Morcombe case here - a boy who was kidnapped and missing for years. It took them years to find him. The guy who told them where the body was is now claiming he didn't do it so lots of media. Horrific.

A pedophile attacked two little girls in a park 1 kilometre from my house recently. A million other news stories are going around and around in my head.

Please be OK. Please be OK. Please be OK.

I then do a second call asking them to call every parent or carer they know. On this second call to BFFs mum I ask her to ask her DD if if she knows where DD6 went. She says "OK, I'll call my babysitter.". WTF? Why didn't you say that when I first called. CALL HER.

I'm upset and trying to stay calm but I can't stop shaking.

I get to the school, see the cop car and right then BFFs mum calls to say babysitters husband has confirmed DD6 is with babysitter. This is 30-45m AFTER being told she was missing.

I get out of the car and fall down on the grass bawling my eyes out and screaming with joy/relief/fear. Scared all of the ASC kids. Then a full blown panic attack (the 4th of my whole life - first one was DD, two others in the months after, never before or since).

Cops and carers run over - it takes me a few mins to blurt out she's safe because I can't fucking breathe. I finally say she's safe and spend 15 mins trying to locate her (they're out for a walk - old lady babysitter doesn't have a mobile. FML).

DD6 and her BFF have convinced this babysitter that DD6 is allowed to go back to her place.

Cops are lovely and want to know if I'm OK to drive. I'm apologising for freaking out - I'm still shaking like a leaf. I just want to hold her RIGHT NOW.

I find out they are home, I rush over there and grab DD6 - I'm crying and kissing her and she is scared "Daddy said I could". I yell: NO HE DID NOT. DO NOT LIE and tell her she has scared the hell out of me and her dad, her nonna, ASC and everyone, I was scared that she had been stolen, she has scared everyone, everyone is worried sick, police have been looking for her. She starts crying and I'm hugging and kissing her. I never want to let go. Ever.

I could have handled it better - I scared my little girl.

I then lay into the old lady babysitter in PG words. DO NOT EVER TAKE SOMEONE'S CHILD UNLESS AN ADULT TELLS YOU ITS OK. WHY ON EARTH WOULD YOU THINK THAT WAS OK? She's trying to say sorry and I'm telling her to jam her sorries - I could have killed myself on the road or someone else. I thought I lost my child forever. I thought horrible, awful things.

NOT OK. Thank you for keeping her safe. I'm so happy I could die right now but you can NEVER do this to anyone ever again. NOT OK.

I feel a bit bad about it - it was an honest mistake but... Jaysus. She won't be making that mistake again.

The sad clown shows up. He is concerned but calm and isn't being a fuckwit. For that I am grateful. I realised I didn't call him as soon as I knew she was safe. He was in hell for 15m longer than necessary. I apologise. He is gracious. Again, I am grateful.

I debrief him on what happened - we also agree to inform each other when we make arrangements outside of the status quo (it is a part of FRR but I didn't inform him for that hour on Halloween, he didn't inform of several instances).

I hug my girls and sit in my car wailing and trying to compose myself. I drive off for the 2m trip home and have to stop a few times to compose myself. The adrenalin has well and truly taken over.

I just want to be home. I just want to hold my girls.

I will ask the sad clown to attend meetings with me, DD6 and the ASC boss and also meet with her teacher and the principal. I am hopeful we can all present a united front on this.

NC is great but because we don't communicate and its 50/50 custody there are gaps that my very smart 6 year old is starting to use to her advantage. First a few little things and now this very big thing.

He may start sharing important information with me after this. I won't hold my breath but I am still hopeful.

I cannot even express my relief. I'm sitting here crying for the Morcombe's and everyone else who did actually lose their children. I only had a glimpse of that hell and it was more horrific than I even imagined.

I'm crying because I want to hold her tonight. I want to talk to her and apologise for scaring her and explain that I was out of my mind in fear and that she must never, ever do this again.

I have seen some scary things but I honestly never been so scared in all of my life.

This is the best possible outcome for today.

Worst and Best Day of my life all in one.

[This message edited by SBB at 6:32 AM, February 12th (Wednesday)]

dazdandconfuzed posted 2/12/2014 06:43 AM

Oh my. I just can't imagine.... I'm so glad your story has a happy ending. Terrifying indeed.

kg201 posted 2/12/2014 06:59 AM

What a nightmare. (((SBB))).

Good that the ex behaved like a human being through this.

jackie89 posted 2/12/2014 07:14 AM

Wow! I can't even imagine the terror you experienced.

So glad it all turned out OK.

Lola2kids posted 2/12/2014 07:40 AM

OMG. I am crying here.
How horrifying.
I'm so glad everything turned out ok.
Here's hoping that the sad clown will be a little more fothcoming in the future.

My heart is pounding.

This is every parent's worst fear.
I hope you are feeling a little better now.

Threnody posted 2/12/2014 08:39 AM

My oldest, now 13, did this when she was about 7. She wandered to a neighbor's house, then went on to another house, then another... It took 2 hours to find her. I remember the terror, and the post-discovery ANGER. Adrenaline is powerful stuff to begin with, but when a momma bear is jazzed up with it, all sorts of things get shredded. I'm impressed you were able to drive at all. I couldn't walk, but believe-you-me I could snarl.

Let us hope this horrifying experience brings about a new period of positive communication between SadClown and you. I suspect it might. It sounds as if for once he was putting ego aside and reacting as a caring father might. It's a good sign.

Warm hugs to you and your little Carmen Sandiego.

nowiknow23 posted 2/12/2014 08:56 AM

So glad she is safe. So glad you are all ok.

I know this panic. I went through it a few years ago with my DD. I was rattled for days and had difficulty sleeping. Don't be surprised if it takes a while to shake off the after effects. (((((SBB & girls)))))

SBB posted 2/12/2014 08:59 AM

The shakes have stopped but its almost 2am and I'm only now feeling sleepy.

I keep going over what happened.

Describing my beautiful little girl to the police was something I simply was not prepared for. Aged six, blonde, blue eyes, about 120cms tall (I think?), 25kgs, blue and white checked school uniform dress.

So normal yet it all felt so sinister. I thought I'd never see her again.

Let us hope this horrifying experience brings about a new period of positive communication between SadClown and you. I suspect it might.

I hope so too. I won't hold my breath but I'll still hope.

I also hope sleep comes soon.

Dark Inertia posted 2/12/2014 09:03 AM

My husband did this to his father. Hubby was 13 years old, they had gone on a bike ride and husband biked ahead while his dad was helping hubby's younger sister. Husband went missing for 6 HOURS. His dad finally found him biking through a residential area, completely lost. Husband is not the type to ask for help, and he certainly wasn't going to then.

His dad told me when he saw my husband he sped up in his truck and skidded to a halt right in front of him. My husband was crying and he said "Dad, I thought I would never see you again!" My father in law was telling me this story because that was the last time he saw my husband cried.

While telling me the story my father in law burst into tears. Very heavy sobbing. Even over a decade later he said the fear he felt that day was still alive.

[This message edited by Dark Inertia at 9:05 AM, February 12th (Wednesday)]

ajsmom posted 2/12/2014 09:03 AM

Wow. Just wow.

Your fear, your anger - as a mommy myself - so very palpable.

I'm thankful she's safe, though I still cannot get it out of my head that that sitter thought it would be OK to have her.




StrongerOne posted 2/12/2014 09:54 AM

OMG, SBB, I am **so** glad you found her, and that maybe it will help make your X get on the same page w you.

When my son was in 2nd grade his school "lost" him during after school care. Kids are supposed to be signed out from class, supposed to go to X Y Z activities in X Y Z order, signed in and out. Kid is isn't in correct place, they're supposed to stop everything, notify principal, find kid. My kid left his class, but neither X nor Y nor Z adults saw him, none of them called the principal, none of them looked for him. OMG, I tore around that school...he was out on the playground (he knew where he was supposed to be, but wanted to do what he wanted to do ) with yet another teacher who should have noted that he wasn't supposed to be there, called the principal, etc.

I was NOT a nice person about it. I threw around words like LAWYER and SUPERINTENDENT, and spewed some very unpleasant personal remarks at all adults involved. Let's just say that they developed a new procedure and followed through on it after that...

Yeah. Just about killed me...I can't imagine having to call the police to give a description

Nature_Girl posted 2/12/2014 10:12 AM

I just cried and got dizzy reading your story. OMG HOW TERRIFYING!!!!!!!!!!

I think it's good you scared your daughter. She needs to see the impact of what she did. Her being scared and seeing her mother freak the fuck out is an appropriate natural consequence.

unbreak_my_heart posted 2/12/2014 12:26 PM


caregiver9000 posted 2/12/2014 12:30 PM

I had a day like that one time. DS9 was six at the time. He was playing on playground equipment and then suddenly he wasn't. I could not find him. I knew what color clothes he was wearing and I could not pick him out of the other children. I asked a teen boy to check the bathroom. Would he have gone to the bathroom without telling me? I realized that there were too many cars, too many people ... baseball games on the fields behind the playground, soccer in front, and rugby on the very back field and so many people. If he'd been snatched he could be gone in a car and be anywhere. It was less than five minutes? Other than the boy who checked the bathroom for me I hadn't had time to get to the notify the authorities or even other adults at the fields. I spotted his turquoise t'shirt and his blonde head at the RUGBY FIELD. Right on the sideline. With a boy around his age that I had never seen and adult males related to the boy? By the time I marched up to DS my relief anger was full on. DS met me with "Mommy I made a new friend..." and the adults said something that I didn't even register as I snatched DS's arm and hugged him and yanked him back to the soccer fields saying all those things you say to the child at that point. I ramped up the degree of stranger danger stories. I scared him and his brother because I made it very clear that there was a very good reason for the RULES.

That is a horrible horrible feeling. It was compounded by the GUILT. I let him out of sight. I wasn't diligent enough. What if what if what if.

I can taste the fear and nausea now... That feeling NEVER completely leaves you.

(((SBB))) I am glad your story ended well. I am so sorry for the agony of those long minutes. I am glad you didn't kill yourself or anyone else driving.

I pray your sleep is restful. Be easy Momma. The next days until you get the girls back might be shaky.

(((more hugs))) my friend.

yestopants posted 2/12/2014 12:45 PM

Craziness....I'm glad DD6 is okay. I zip through that post glad I can't even imagine.

sparkysable posted 2/12/2014 12:47 PM

OMG this is horrifying! I teared up just thinking about it.

I have a question though....

The mum calls me and says no - she's not there. Her DD hasn't been to school today because she's sick.

So then how did YOUR DD end up with the babysitter of the friend if the friend wasn't even in school, and your DD was?

Pass posted 2/12/2014 13:03 PM

I'm so relieved all turned out well, SBB. Sleep well.

HurtsButImOK posted 2/12/2014 13:06 PM


So glad she is safe.

Tearsoflove posted 2/12/2014 13:35 PM

OMG, you poor thing.

When my son was 9, I was pregnant with his youngest sister and on bed rest. I went to lie down and told him he could play in the fenced yard or inside. When I got up, his middle sister was watching TV and he was nowhere to be found. She said she didn't know where he was. We looked but didn't find him. We screamed his name. I looked outside. I called neighbors. I called 911. While waiting for 911, I checked his room one more time and noticed a lump in the top bunk. He was prone to bad migraines and had crawled into the bed and cocooned himself in the covers and went to sleep. He never heard us screaming his name even when I was yelling in the same room. I called 911 to let them know he'd been found but they still sent an officer to be sure everything was okay. My heart still races a bit when I think about it and my son is now 27.

I can't even imagine how terrifying it must have been with your daughter not at home, knowing she was in someone else's care. Add the news reports and confusion and you deserve a day at a spa. I'm so glad she wasn't harmed.

Jrazz posted 2/12/2014 13:41 PM


I would have reacted the exact same way. I'm so very glad that your DD6 is safe.

Hopefully this is a day that she and sadclown remember and try to not repeat ever again.

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