It only takes a turn of the head for a “quick -on- his- feet- toddler” to slip through a cracked- open door. That’s what happened at Play Shoppe on Friday morning.
Another parent and child had gone to the rest room, and the door to the playroom was closed behind them, but not tightly secured. I noticed a Dad’s eyes scanning the room – the various areas where a child can get happily lost in play and exploration.
But then I noticed a different expression on his face. His child was not in the room.
And so we were both out the Playroom door and down the hall.
It was probably only a minute or two before this little guy was found, sitting cozily and quietly out of sight between two shelves in the Toy Lending Library, playing with a toy.
And now there was yet another expression on this dad’s face – one of total relief, one of immense joy, one of love.
I think as parents we’ve all experienced momentary panic when we become unexpectedly separated from our child – only to find him or her playing behind some bushes at the park, or in amongst the clothes racks at a department store, or dawdling and missing the bus at school and not being at the bus stop when you arrive to pick him up.
And so its not hard to understand the relief this dad was feeling.
And we can easily empathize with any parent’s fear and pain of being separated from their child.
And so, in my heart, I hold all parents and children everywhere – and hope for their security and togetherness.