Last week, on our adventure to the mall, but after lunch at the food court of ill-repute, the girls were behaving so nicely that I thought it might be possible to take a look in Macy’s at some Giani Bernini handbags that were on clearance.
Yeah, I know – “Silly Mama! What makes you think you can actually look at stuff YOU like?”
Anyhoo, I sure paid the price for it!
The girls were good as gold going up the escalator to the handbag department, and I had a good grip on both their hands, so I went over to peruse the merchandise.
Somehow, Halle squiggled her hand away from me and took off like a flash down the aisle. Lugging Zanna along with me in hot pursuit, Halle juked right in between some racks of lingerie, and she was out of my sight for LITERALLY TWO SECONDS.
But when I turned the corner, she was nowhere to be found! Back and forth I lugged Zanna, who I was carrying at this point, calling Halle’s name louder and louder. I begged, I pleaded, I offered bribes, but nothing would entice her to come to me.
At this point, only a couple of minutes after she left my sight, someone had gotten store security. I gave them a description of Halle and her clothing and the security lady had the office trying to find Halle on the security cameras.
By this time, a posse of about 6 other women had joined in, combing the aisles and calling Halle’s name.
I was nearly hysterical by this time. It can take as little as 30 seconds for someone to successfully abduct your child and Halle had been gone for much longer than that. I had visions of unspeakable things befalling her, and was praying for all I was worth, as I ran back and forth in the area I had last seen her, shrieking her name and begging her to please come back to Mama.
A couple of the other posse members had checked the floors above and below us, and we hadn’t seen hide nor hair of the girl, when one of the other women shushed us.
She listened carefully and then looked over at a rack of heavy winter coats.
“I think I hear a little voice somewhere here,” she said. She parted the coats, and there was Halle, sitting on the floor and smiling up at the lady.
“We found her! We found her!” Everyone rejoiced as I ran over to her, hugged her and burst into tears. I admonished her that leaving Mama’s sight was so dangerous! Not safe!
Apparently, once she’d scooted under that rack of heavy coats, she either couldn’t hear me calling her, or we couldn’t hear her calling me.
The store security lady reassured me that this actually happens pretty often.
Anyhoo, we went home and the first thing I did was order a couple of kid leashes (Baby Buddy ones) from Amazon.com.
No way in he– am I going to let that happen again!