Lost and Found

Last night was probably one of the most frightening experiences of J and I have ever gone through as parents.

J and I had dinner by ourselves last night. He made another wonderful dinner for me, pork ribs cooked in sauerkraut with potatoes and carrots. A very yummy dinner and one of my favorites. After we were done eating we called all the girls to come and eat, we had just wanted to be alone together kind of in-home-date-night. So we called the girls and the 3 oldest ones came. We asked where Faith was? was she sleeping? no they said she wasn't downstairs. We called next door as she had been over there playing and she must still be there. No she wasn't there. So then I raced to every bedroom turned every blanket over looked under the beds and in the closets. She wasn't there.

I called our neighbor back and she said I am coming over and then all of us poured out of the house in sheer panic and terror screaming for Faith. I grabbed a sweater and put my boots on and ran outside. I didn't even know which way to go. The kids ran to another neighbors to see if by chance she was there. We were calling in all different directions and I thought I could hear a very faint cry. I didn't know which direction it was coming from. I yelled at the girls to stop calling for Faith so I could hear where it was coming from and if it was just my imagination or the girls I was hearing and not Faith. It was like being in the matrix and everything slowing down but going a hundred miles a minute at the same time. Knowing we live where wild animals might be waking up from hibernation is not far from your thoughts.

I ran across the road and then I was sure I heard crying. Morgan and I took off through the trees as fast as the deep snow would allow. We went crashing through the trees and we yelled at the others that we could hear her. They began to follow. Morgan spotted her jacket at the same time I finally saw her tracks. She was about another 25 feet from where her jacket lay. She was standing there stuck in the snow, deep in the trees, snow up to her knees with just a t-shirt on and soaking wet. Morgan got to her first and hugged her, then I saw Emily there while I desperately struggled to get there. Being a lot heavier than the girls I was sinking up to my thighs almost every other step. I took my sweater off and wrapped her up, noticing that her eyes were dilated and she was shivering so hard her teeth were clattering. She was freezing. We pulled her out of the snow and realized even her running shoes, not boots, were soaked.....like dripping with water. We cried and screamed to the rest that we had her. By this time Hailey had made it to us with boots barely on and Sandra close behind.

It felt like forever to get her out of there. It was a huge struggle trying to climb my way back out with an additional 50+ pound soaking wet freezing 4 year old. Morgan and I started passing her back and forth trying to get her out. We all were sinking in the deep pockets of snow. There was no way J could make it all the way in where we were as he is heavier and doesn't have the strength needed. We finally made our way to where J was and he started carrying her. He got stuck a few times too but we finally made it out. He told the girls to go ahead and start a warm bath and make some tea.

She cried for 15 min in the bath as it stung her toes. She looked dazed and confused and very pale and we didn't know whether to take her to the hospital right away or not. Her toes were white. Within 20 min though the color started coming back and a smile came on her face and we knew she was going to be alright.

J and I cried almost all night. Every time we thought of her out there in the snow and cold for about 1 1/2 - 2 hours all by herself we get chocked up. She had been playing outside with her friend who is only 5 years old and they had gone down into the ravine by themselves which is against both families house rules. Then when her friend got called to go home by her brother, they both thought Faith was following them. She was trying to follow but when you are only a few feet of the ground yourself and have no sense of direction, she got lost. And we had no idea. She was lost for a very long time for a small child and we had no idea she was even lost.

But THANK GOD she is found and she is fine. I stayed home from work today as you can imagine I am emotionally wiped out and my body is feeling the effects of fighting my way through the deep snow to get to my baby. Thank God she is FOUND!

22 comments:

mom of 2 said...

Oh my gosh...that is awful!!! What a terrible ordeal that must have been for all of you!! I'm so glad she was found and is ok!!

Clan Schmitt said...

I am still crying, while writing this. Thank God you found her.

Ruth said...

Oh, I am so thankful you were able to get to her and for God stepping in to help out.

Shash said...

That would just freak me out totally!!! I'm calling you.

cara said...

oh my goodness! how completely scary. i'm just imagining her cheeky little grin and i am happy that you guys found her and that the Lord preserved her life. that will be a story you'll be telling for years!

Morning Glory said...

Oh, I can't imagine the terror you must have felt. Thank God, indeed, that you found her when you did!!

Dawn said...

My word! I have the shivers right this moment. Kevin got lost when he was 3, and was gone for about 45 minutes in town on a nice warm day. I can only imagine how much worse this was for all of you. She has the right name! Thank God for his guidance and direction to all of you. Wow.

I wanted you to know that Kevin and I have finally finished the next chapter of our story, if you're interested. Lostness of another sort!

Anonymous said...

I too am thankful your daughter was found, but I have to wonder who was supervising these young girls as they played in the snow, on acreage with hibernating animals nearby who might be soon to wake up. Was your 4 year old expected to come home all by herself? You may want to save those romantic dinners for when everyone is safely tucked in bed next time.

Lala's world said...

to anonymous, thank you for stating the obvious! we feel totally guilty that she was outside when we thought she was safely inside our neighbors home..... too bad we can't all be perfect all the time and thanks for the uplifting and positive comment after our family has gone through so much trauma, really makes me thankful there are so many people like you in this world

Nadine said...

How absolutely horrible...I totally understand that feeling of your heart in your throat because you can't find your child...we lost our son when he was small at the zoo and it was the longest 10 mins of our lives.

That poor baby to be stuck in the snow...my heart just broke reading about it. I am so grateful that the Lord had you find her and now she is safe in your home again. Praise Him for that.

Amanda said...

It is too easy for strangers to make ignorant judgements on one's parenting. Thank God she was found and I am sure you will keep a closer eye next time.

Anonymous said...

lala
I am so thankful that she was OK. I was in tears reading this. Things happen, all that matters is that she is OK. Don't beat your self up over the other anoymonous comment. Ii is easy for people to make these judgements over the internet when they don't know you. I 'm sure they would not be so brave if they had to say this to your face.

Anonymous said...

When you broadcast your life's details on the internet, you need to be prepared for whatever comments come your way - they may not always be sympathetic. You also may want to think twice about what you choose to publish - what we write is not always perceived by others as we intend it to be. Some tales are best and safest told face-to-face between friends.

Anonymous said...

As many of our mothers have said. If you can't say something nice don't say anything at all. Just because someone was brave enough to share something that happened to them, and you personally would not share this story doesn't mean you need to make negative and judgemental comment. What matters is that this little girl is alright.

Lala's world said...

yes I have the right to publish whatever I want too and everyone has the right to agree or disagree with me, I am fine with that. I do have a problem with people who tend to kick a dog when it's down, as the saying goes. Many of my friends and family read my blog and it is a way I use to communicate what goes on in our lives, the good and the bad, we all make mistakes I just found it a bit mean for the lack of a better word to say what you did when obviously any parent would feel guilty when their child goes missing!

Jenmomof4 said...

LaLa,

I am so glad that she is ok! What a terrible night for all of you!! I am so glad that J is doing better. Try not to let the negative comments get you down!! I am so glad you shared this with all of us. Jen

Ruth said...

oh lala!!! my mama heart is going out to you. Thank God she is ok and nothing more then a little shook up. this mama business is hard on the heart, heh?

Cheri said...

WOW...that is scary. I'm so glad that she is OK. It's experiences like that where you see so clearly God's hand of protection in times when we need it most.

MugwumpMom said...

Wow! How scary. I'm so glad that she was found and is ok. Thank God!

Take pictures tomorrow when you're helping Waawee?? and ask her to email me with her address, phone and email address..I had it but lost it.

Bye for now

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

how absolutely TERRIFYING!!!!! Thank God she is ok!!!!! You must still be shaking!!!

holli said...

Lala,

I know people who have sent their kids to other people's homes thinking their children were being supervised by a competent adult - only to see them standing out in the street!!! When you turn your children over to another adult in the form of babysitting - you're putting your trust in their skills as a caretaker. I know we don't watch anyone else's child without physically walking them back to the parents.. especially a small child! I'm so glad this had a happy ending. I'm so glad that anonymous person has all the answers.

Carol-Ann said...

The cowardly "Anonymous" writer needs to be strung up on the clothesline by her/his big toes! Can you imagine what it must be like to be his/her child? Advice for breakfast, nag for lunch and punishment for supper! Bah!

I used to panic when my little girl would think it was funny to play hide and seek among the clothes racks in a department store! I can't imagine the level of fright you must have had!

I'm so, so sorry to know you've had such an experience! It could have happened to ANY Mom and ANY child!

We don't always need to see eye-to-eye with each other in blog-world but for GOODNESS' sake, let's NOT be Anonymous! I've seen an Anonymous Devouring Animal on another blog and the paralyzing poison seeps deeply through cyberspace.

And one final note to him/her should they return here to see the extent of the rucous: there is a Day coming when there will be no such thing as being "Anonymous"! That's not a Christian threat! That's a soul-searching reality!