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You don’t know me and I don’t know you, but yesterday, I was looking for your little boy. We had been swimming at a hotel down the beach from yours when a security guard entered the pool and asked for all of the parent’s attention. There was a little boy, only three years old in a bathing suit bottom without a shirt, who had wandered away on the beach. My heart sank. We were to keep our eyes open.

The hair raised on my arms and on the back of my neck and I felt sick. Three years old? I have a three year old. If I could barely comprehend this scenario and feel so scared, I could not imagine the emotions you were feeling. We all sprung into action and started looking on the beach. I wanted to find your little boy so badly. Where was he? Was he safe? Scared?

We were soon flagged down that your son had been found and returned. My eyes filled with tears and there was relief. A reaction minuscule to what you must have been experiencing. We learned your son had been wandering on the street and a taxi driver had seen him and picked him up. Wow…no words.

I wondered where you were when your son wandered away. I was not judging though because I know this can happen to even the most helicopter of parents. It only takes a second. I cannot and will not judge because I don’t know you or the circumstances that occurred. We have conversations with other adults, attend to other children, search for our phone that is ringing…we blink…and they are gone.

I can only say that I was so happy to hear your son was returned safely. I think of my own three year old wandering around, scared, all alone, with the danger a city street offers, from cars to strangers and beyond. I gave my children extra hugs and kisses today because of you. When they were sleeping, I stood over them thanking g-d they were safe in their beds.

My heart goes out to you as I can only imagine what yesterday was like for you. When your child went missing, it was as if my child went missing. I would do anything to help save a child’s life whether it was a stranger, acquaintance, friend or family.

I am writing you this letter to know that you had many families on your side yesterday who were not only searching, but praying for you. I bet you have not let go of your son since you were reunited and I don’t blame you. We were all reminded of how quickly life can change. As parents, we all have to watch out for each other’s children, even if we have never met them.

As I look at my son, it reminds me how fragile and needy a three year old really is. It’s a big world when you are only three feet tall. It’s also pretty large when you’re a parent looking for your missing child. Know from one parent to another, we have your back. It truly does take a village!


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1 Comment

  1. So scary! My ten-year-old went missing one day. He was playing in the play park outside a restaurant with his twin brother and younger sister. I went to call them when the food arrived, and I found only two children. They said he had gone to the toilet, but he wasn’t there. We went chasing all over the place trying to find him, the restaurant was locked down and all the staff helped search for him. Eventually it turned out he had gone to the toilet, then wandered around the restaurant and ended in the playstation games room. My heart stopped beating for a full ten minutes!

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