Wednesday, February 27, 2013

losing Noah

I've recently realized that I forgot about a pretty significant event in our family that occurred last year.

Noah got lost on one of our walks. I thought he had been abducted.

Beginning in November 2012, I started walking more outside with the kids on their bikes in an effort to gain less weight for this pregnancy (i don't think it's helping though!). On December 4, 2012 we were having some friends over for dinner and since it was cooking nicely in the crock pot, I thought we could go on a nice long walk.
a photo recreation taken today

Usually on our walks, we go north of our house until the road goes up a steep hill. When we reach the hill, or before, we would turn aside.

But since I had dinner simmering nicely at home, I decided we would tackle the hill and go for the full 2.5 mile walk. We live very close to the edge of the Black Hills and there's a road (South Canyon Road) just a half mile up from our house that skirts the hills, rolling nicely up and down. It's so pretty. I'd never taken the kids up there because of the hill. 
THE hill

We got to the end of the road (Nemo Road), our half way point, and turned around to head home. Now here's where I need to say that Noah is a very obedient boy and would always wait for me at each road intersection before crossing. He would never get that far away. However, I had slowed down to help Evie and Noah kept going. When Noah reached to the top of this big hill (where this photo is taken from), he decided that he would try to go it alone. And once he started going, he could not stop! Once he reached the bottom of the hill, he was going so fast, he thought he'd just ride the half mile home on his momentum and wait for us there.

But I didn't know that. When Evie, Samuel and I reached the top of the hill, I expected to see Noah waiting there for me. I did not see him. We ran down to this intersection to look further down the hill and still couldn't see him (because he was already down and on his way home). It never entered my mind that he wouldn't wait for me so I thought he'd been abducted in the few minutes he was out of sight. I walked back up the hill and around the block hoping perhaps he took a wrong turn. I called Terry in a panic. Terry said to call the police, which I did, and he headed home from work. After explaining where we were and what had happened like three or four times, they instructed me to just wait where I was. So I stood right here at the top of hill freaking out. That was the worst part, just pacing there.
see the car's angle on the road? it's a steep one.

 I remember running back up the hill to look for Noah again and looking back at Evie, who couldn't quite keep up. She was crying and freaking out too. It was just so very scary! 
a view of the bottom of the hill as it turns south on it's way back to our house.

After about 10 minutes of waiting on the phone, a police man finally came to the top of the hill and informed me that they had found him waiting calmly at our house for me to show up. He loaded up Evie's bike and Samuel's stroller and drove us home. Noah was just standing there all sheepishly with another police man and I hugged him and scolded him. When we got inside, we lectured and talked, Noah had a good cry over all of it and was all better. For me, however, it took several days to stop feeling all panicky as if I was still in the midst of searching for my first born - I felt like I was still on top of that hill! Then I didn't want to walk that way anymore due to the fearful memories. Since then, time has healed most of the fear and I'm over it. It did take me this long to remember it! I thought I'd better write about it so none of us forget. After all, Evie has also run away. I sure hope Samuel never does anything like this!

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