Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Lose My Kid and I Just Might Join Your Church

Holy cow! Has it been a week since I've posted? How can that be? Surely I must have been really busy organizing the house. No, not that. Umm. Catching up on that "to do" list? Nope. Watching countless hours of TV and lying around eating bon bons? Not even that! How about posting those vacation pics. Well, now you're just being silly.

I guess we've been doing a lot of "Summer Time-ing" around here. Soccer camp-ing, swimming pool-ing, eating out-ing, sleeping late-ing. It's been great. We've been worthless and it's been wonderful. It's getting a little boring, though...

So, anyway. Here's something exciting for your reading pleasure:

We've been way laid back in almost every "commitment" there is to be made since moving to the New City. In the past, Shawn and I have had a bit of a tendency to "leap before we look" when it comes to major decisions - cars, homes, churches, furniture... We see something bright and shiny and we enable each other to BUY IT! Sometimes it's worked out. Sometimes it hasn't.

But, we're older and wiser now (stop laughing). And, we know it's a lot easier to enter a commitment than to get out of one. That's why we're in a year-long lease while we figure out which neighborhood we want to choose "for keeps." That's why I'm driving a car with a glovebox that won't close (Ok. That one's all me. Shawn hates my car.) And, that's why we haven't chosen a church yet.

And, this summer we have been out of town every. single. Sunday except for two when I was laid up with my bum wheel. But, this Sunday we were here and we decided to go back and try a church we had visited and really liked back in the Spring.

The service was great. I got stopped by some friends of some friends while Shawn and Spence (who had no interest in joining the other kids during "Children's Church" and had stayed with us in "Big Church") went to get Elizabeth. Shawn and Spence returned. We all finished visiting and I said, "Where's Lulu?"

Shawn said, "We didn't know where you had dropped her off." (I had walked her out with the other kids during the portion of the service where the kids leave for Children's Church.)

Oh. Okay. Let's go get her.

We neared the Children's Area check-in desk and Shawn said, "This is where I came. They said they don't have her."

Indeed. I asked the women at the counter and they said they didn't have an Elizabeth. "She must be with the big kids upstairs."

Upstairs we went. Crickets. The lights were even turned off.

Back to the check-in desk. "She must be upstairs with the big kids." Willing myself not to flip out on these kind people who I knew had not sold my child into human trafficking, Shawn and I explained that we had gone up there, and maybe we just didn't know where to look...

A kind woman, who I believe is the Children's Director, greeted us and said she'd take us. Even she was surprised to see the upstairs was a ghost town. Back downstairs we headed, as she repeated, "We'll find them. They're here somewhere."

She asked someone where the big kids were. In the library. The library! We went to the library. We found the "big kid" teachers! And, they had. no. kids. with. them.

Y'all? By this time the building was empty. All of the parishioners had gone by now. The only people left were staff. And the security guard. And he was summoned. And no one had my child.

I started to cry. I couldn't help it. I couldn't start running the halls screaming her name because I didn't know where the halls were. 

We all started heading back to the Children's Area check-in desk and one of the workers was walking toward us. With Elizabeth. Saying, "We thought her name was Avery!" Now people? My child has a lot of nicknames. "Avery" is not one of them. I couldn't tell if maybe the workers even thought she was another little girl actually named Avery. Regardless, when we asked them to bring us Elizabeth, they weren't going to bring us Avery. That would be dumb!

Shawn grabbed Lulu. I tried really hard to get it together; tell everyone it was alright as they profusely apologized. And we left.

And today? I got the nicest email from one of the Pastors at the church. And, I cannot imagine the investigating he had to do to figure out that Shawn's and my name and email on the Sign-in Page from the church service were the hysterical parents of Elizabeth/Avery. But, kudos to him for it. Because his final words of "Again my deepest apologies for the fear and understandable concern you all experienced at a place that should be a very safe and building place," make me think that this just might be a church I would like to visit again (along with his assurances that he has never seen anything like that happen in his 21 years at this church).

So, the moral? Lose my kid and I just might join your church.

It's so complicated in my head.


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