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It Only Takes A Split Second

Sarah In Black and white Final 3 wm

For the past two days I have been trying to decide whether or not to post this story and finally today, I decided it was worth the risk. Unfortunately, I have seen multiple people get blasted or judged for their choices or parenting skills and it saddens me that people feel the need to cast stones. The reason I want to share this is to show how quickly things can happen even when you think you are right there with your kids……so please don’t judge, because I am sure I am not the only one that has had this type of thing happen to them.

In my last post I mentioned how Sarah wants to be outside every waking minute of the day…….well, I was not kidding!! Two nights ago, she got out of the house and we didn’t know it until she walked to the front of the house and rang the bell. Frightened doesn’t even begin to explain how we felt when we saw her waving at us through the window with a big old smile on her face.

We were all home and didn’t even realize that she had escaped. I was watching a dvd upstairs in our bedroom with both of the kids, Nick and Sarah. Pat was downstairs in the office still working, which is common because of the nature of his business. So Sarah told me she was going downstairs to see Daddy for a couple of minutes and then would come back up. This is also normal and usually means she is going down to get Daddy to give her a snack and she usually comes back up with a bowl of crackers or pretzels.

About Fifteen minutes goes by and we all hear our doorbell ringing which is odd, because it is not about 8:45pm and dark outside. I jump out of the bed and run downstairs and meet Pat at the front door and as we open we our horrified at what we see. The two of us were literally trembling and ready to accuse one another of not watching her. We both grabbed and picked her up and very sternly told her she was never ever to walk out any door in our house without Mommy or Daddy. I think we got our point across or she just picked up on our fear, because her little happy, I am proud of myself smile quickly turned into tears.

After we all calmed down, we all went back upstairs watched the end of the movie. I barely slept the entire night because my mind was racing……the thought of what COULD HAVE HAPPENED in that amount of time. Neither of us would ever forgive ourselves. It really only takes a split second. Thankfully we live in a very safe community, but now a days that doesn’t matter.

I can tell you, we are changing things around here and we all learned a valuable lesson. Even when you think your kids are safe inside your home, they are not…..especially when you are dealing with an independent 2.5 year old who wants to do everything herself. She is old enough and tall enough to open locks on all doors. Even with Baby proof locks for regular doors, she can figure out how to get out through our sliders in both the kitchen and the entertainment room that lead out to our deck. We really have no other choice but to set the alarm when we are inside so if she gets out, we will know immediately!!

I have spent the last few days beating myself up over this one…..I know I am a good parent, but this really freaked me out…….I am sure there are many of you out there that can identify or have been in similar situations whether it be at your home, in a dept store, or any public place. It can all change so fast… better believe she has not been out of my sight for even a second since this has happened.

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  • Jodee Leader - How scary! I bet Miss Sarah doesn’t get out of your sight for long now! It is such a busy age and they are so quick!ReplyCancel

  • Sandy Toes - That is very scary! I have one that would do that! As my mother would say..”In situations where the child could be in danger…Put the Fear of God in Them”
    Sandy toeReplyCancel

  • Rebecca - Oh Lisa… I can guarantee you 100% that most mothers who read this have had this happen at one time or another!! Grant escaped out our front door when he had just turned 2, and one of my neighbors came up and rang the bell to tell me that he was wandering close to the STREET!!! I was horrified and I beat myself up for days that I wasn’t watching him more closely… but the fact is that we CAN’T keep our eyes on our kids every second. All we can do is entrust our kids to God, pray for their safety and do the best we can! It’s hard sometimes balancing allowing & controlling… we don’t want to be hovering over our kids always fearful that something’s going to happen to them, but we don’t want to be too lax either. It’s a fine line to walk, and all of us parents have to figure out where that line is depending on our parenting style and our kids’ personalities.

    You are a wonderful mother and I hope posting about this will help get any negative feelings out of your system. I know you will get lots of supportive comments too, that will help. :)


  • Jeni - That is so scary…thank goodness she rung the doorbell! You are so lucky…my mind too always thinks what could have happened that didn’t. Setting the alarm is a really good idea…now you will just have to get use to it.

    Once I lost Ben for about 5 minutes at a public pool in Germany that was filled with hundreds of people. Thank goodness he back tracked his steps and found me….but it haunts me to this day!ReplyCancel

  • Denise - Don’t beat yourself up…we have all had these moments. One of ours left the house and went to the neighbors once in the dark, barefoot and she called us to let us know he was there!

    Thanks for sharing because it makes us all feel better that we are not the only ones~ReplyCancel

  • Audrey - Oh Lisa, you are a great mother and I know that must have been one of the scariest things ever. I am a new mom, my baby is 8 months old, and I am even scare now. THere are so many crazy people out in the world and the sad thing is it doesn’t matter where you are, they are everywhere. Thank you for sharing this story because it truly does show how fast things can happen. It opened my eyes.ReplyCancel

  • Susie and Gordie - Things like this can happen even to the very best parents. Don’t beat yourself up but as you mentionned, it is a lesson learned and finding ways to prevent it is definitely what you should do, what we all should do as great parents.ReplyCancel

  • Trina - It is scary and could happen to any one of us. So glad she was ok!ReplyCancel

  • Sue - Don’t be so hard on yourself. It is impossible as a parent to ward off every possible scenerio. There was no way to prepare or prevent this one.
    It is hard balance for me between “putting the fear of God” in Alexa and letting her gain some independence. I too am one of those moms who never let her out of my sight in public but in our home that is impossible and would stifle her. You are not a bad parent. Kids will push and test their boundaries, that is how they learn. I have been teaching Alexa ( who’s 4 )lately about listening to her gut. I want her to be able to learn to follow her instincts and make good choices for those times that I am not right by her side. It is one of our hardest jobs as a parent.

    If anyone judges you on what happened then shame on them, no parent is perfect.

    Sue: )ReplyCancel

  • Gail - Lisa, You’re an amazing mother and things like this just happen sometimes…please don’t beat yourself up about it. Fortunately little Sarah rang the doorbell. Mr. Will has gone outside too, these kids are so fast! Of course we all panic and think the worst. I’ve been a mom for 24 years and it doesn’t get any easier.

    hugs from me.:)ReplyCancel

  • Marla - Oh Lisa! I know EXACTLY how scary that feeling is, and it’s actually happened to me more than once (Jakob is a wanderer). We now have locks at the tops of our doors that no one else can reach but us and even with them, we have to be extra cautious. It can and DOES happen in the blink of an eye.

    Big hugs to you, friend!ReplyCancel

  • Monica, Brian, Carter and Cameron - Lisa-
    Don’t beat your self up over this. My son now almost 4 did the same thing when he was a little over two years old. At the time we did not have an alarm on our house, however since then we have invested in one mainly for the chime that we hear when a door is opened. This way we know when anyone enters or exits our house. As a parent it is very scary to know our children could escape and us not even know it. By putting the fear of God in them hopefully they learn.ReplyCancel

  • Lilli's Mom - Hugs sweet Lisa! You are an awesome loving parent. It’s so obvious through your images and words how much you love and care for your family. Please stop beating yourself up over this. Independent little ones have a mind of their own and it’s impossible to watch them every second of every day, especially if you have more than one child. This could have happened to any of us. Lilli is easily captivated by pets and other children so it’s nothing for her to wander off on her own. She doesn’t usually get very far but she has managed to get out of our eyesight a couple of times. It happens so quickly! The second time she saw how frightened we were so it hasn’t happened since. Hopefully, Sarah has learned her lesson as well and will choose other ways to exert her independence.

    June & LilliReplyCancel

  • Courtney - Wow my heart stopped just reading that, I can’t imagine how you felt. Don’t beat yourself up, it can happen to anyone. I have learned through watching my nephew that little ones are quick and things can happen even when you are watching them. I am so glad Sarah is safe and everything turned out perfect.ReplyCancel

  • Kam - Oh friend, so sorry this happened. But chin up! It could have happened to any of us. We live in the 1st house in our subdivision close to a busy road and Syd let herself out one day to go swing in the back yard! I had NO IDEA!!! Talk about scary and beating myself up! She was two…

    Thank God she was safe and now you know how to make a few little changes to keep it from happening again. Look at it as a positive and kick those negative feelings and judgments to the curb! You’re a terrific mama!

    Love and hugs!ReplyCancel

  • Isabella's Mommy and Daddy - Don’t beat yourself up over this.. EVERY mother has gone through this before.. unless they are with thier kids 24-7…
    I had one of those little latch locks put on my door so that the boys couldn’t go out when they were little..
    Sounds like you did the perfect thing..
    Have a great week..

  • Alicia W. - Sweetheart! This just happened to us last weekend. My husband took out the trash and forgot to shut the gate and low and behold my 3 yr old daughter walked out of the gate while he wasn’t looking and walked to the front of the house and rang the door bell. I had those same emotions your having. It’s okay – It taught both of us a valuable lesson that just because we have taught them to NEVER go outside unattended, we have to make it to where they can’t get out if they wanted too without us. Needless to say we went and bought new top locks for the doors and another secure lock for both gates on the fence.

    Thankfully in both our cases our little girls were okay and we all learned from it. :)ReplyCancel

  • Jboo - Oh Lisa — I’m sure you were scared out of your wits when you saw her outside! Must have been the full moon or something as last night, I thought M was outside with Rick and he came in and I asked where she was and he said he didn’t know! Yikes! Like you, I was terrified, but ended up she was quietly playing on the computer downstairs. Don’t beat yourself up about it! You are terrific parents. Kids — the gray hair they give ya! Have a good day.


  • day by day - awww…sending you a great big hug, Lisa!! Please don’t be so hard on yourself…these things happen to all of us! We do the best we can, but it is close to impossible to be on top of our kids 24/7.

    The more independant ones are surely more of a challenge. I could share similar stories with you about EACH of my 4 kids!

    My son was such an escape artist that we had to literally security lock ourselves in our home…our company could never figure out how to get out of our home once they were in…because of all the locks and security measures, but rest assured he always figured out how to escape! Our standing joke was to keep our car keys hidden, because he was fascinated with our cars and we could literally envision sitting in our living room and looking out the window watching him drive by us in our car. ahhh!!! lol!

    So cheer up…you are a wonderful Mommy…these things happen!!ReplyCancel

  • Mom, Mommy, Mama - Our 2 year old sounds very much like yours:) thanks for sharing your story. Our alarm has a setting that makes it beep (not go off)everytime a door or window is opened, maybe yours has a setting like that so you dont have to have it go off if she opens the door to go out!ReplyCancel

  • Dita - Yep, it has happened here too, just this week! At 20 months our little one is also Miss Independent and she can crack any childproof lock so far…it’s amazing. The other day she walked right out the front screen door that has a LOCK on it. Luckily we saw her before she made it down the front steps but it happens so quick.
    Don’t beat yourself up for it. I think the alarm idea is a great idea and I’ll start doing the same over here.
    Hugs to you!ReplyCancel

  • Kiy - New reader (and follower). I haven’t yet read all the responses but I am sure you will get folks saying either “been there lived through something like that” or “gosh, thanks for posting so we can take precautions/think about this happening”.

    I can totally see that happening in our house SO easily. I too have a young independent (28 months) and she terrifies me on a regular basis (just ask my hair colorist!). I know she is going to do something like this someday, I know it in my bones.

    We don’t have an alarm system on our house, but we have those little hook and eye things. We installed them once Little Bit could ‘almost’ reach the door knobs. We even did it on the slider.

    Good luck mama, I am sure you are doing your very best. Don’t beat yourself up over this, it’s scary and hopefully it was a good lesson for not only Sarah but her brother too!

    Cheers and hugs, KiyReplyCancel

  • Kelly And Allison - Lisa,
    When Kelly was 2 years old. While we were in our summer home which is right on the ocean. She was taking a nap. I was upstairs working. Suddenly I heard a neighbor asking “Kelly, what are you doing?” She had got out somehow. We do have to be careful. But, kids are kids. They will do crazy things. If not this, will be something else. Just last week, I heard Kelly calling from outside, she was up on a ladder trying to get to the roof. Don’t beat yourself up, it happens to all of us. Just have to live and learn.ReplyCancel

  • jiangxigirls - Big hugs to you my friend! That must have been so scary. You are a great mom. I know it is hard not to beat yourself up about this but take comfort in the fact that nothing bad happened and you learned a very valuable lesson. We all question our parenting at one time or another (at least I know I have!) but stuff like this makes you stronger.


  • Briana's Mom - Please don’t beat yourself up about this! You are a wonderful mom! Things like this happen. It is a lesson learned – for you and Sarah. And I am so glad you posted about this because now I am going to keep an extra eye on Briana. Bri hasn’t tried to go outside by herself yet, but you never know. Hugs!ReplyCancel

  • Brandi - I totally know how scared you must have been. I, too, have been in a situation very similar. My daughter, when she was about 2 1/2 managed to get out of the house. We looked EVERYWHERE inside for her at first, then realized she must have gotten outside. After frantically searching for a few minutes, calling & calling her name, we were just about ready to call the police when we heard this giggle. She had climbed ON TOP of the car and was laying on the roof….just WATCHING us call for her!!! After we calmed down a bit and talked to her about NEVER, EVER, EVER going outside without one of us again, we then had a long conversation about not answering when she’s being called. Can you say ornery?!

    Anyway….I’m pretty sure EVERY parent has had something like this happen. Don’t beat yourself up too hard. Hopefully Sarah understands how scared you were for her, and that she can’t ever do that again.


  • Patricia/NYC - Oh Lisa…I KNOW of which you speak!! It is the SCARIEST feeling in the world!! But, do NOT beat yourself up about it!! You are a WONDERFUL mom & are doing all the right things to prevent it from happening again. It’s so sad that we live in such a scary world these days.

    We had a similiar situation where Kiara walked right out of her grandparents’ apartment door as we were all getting ready to leave & not looking in that direction…we couldn’t find her AT ALL! I was beside myself…until I heard crying…she walked right up to the next floor. She was 3 at the time. It was the scariest 10 minutes of my life…& yes, I beat myself up about it too, but really, that’s wasted energy.


  • Michelle - Lisa,
    I have no doubt, you ARE a great mom!! This could have happened to anyone. When I was a nanny, I looked outside and the youngest child (age 2) had gotten outside and was getting ready to walk on the street!! I still remember the feeling of panic like it was yesterday… and it was long, long ago. We all do our best everyday. I am just so glad Sarah is safe!

    Sending a big hug to you!!

  • sandra - How scary!!! Something can happen so quickly. I’m so glad that Sarah was unharmed and please know that I for one would NEVER judge you or your parenting, because I know something like this could happen to any of us!ReplyCancel

  • Sharie - Amelia “ran away” a year ago this month. I was working from home and daycare was closed because of the flood in our community. I had to go hand out flyers to businesses who had been flooded. My niece, Lauren was babysitting. Amelia wanted to go to the park – I told Lauren not until after lunch. She told Amelia that – Amelia didn’t like it…Lauren went to the bathroom and came back and Amelia was no where to be found. Amelia had just learned how to open the front door and Lauren didn’t know it – so she first searched the house – then went out the slider to the back. Amelia was NO WHERE. She finally found her across the street talking to the neighbor – one I DON’T know. We also live on not a busy street, but well traveled. Needless to say, Lauren called me beside herself – I told her to put Amelia on time out until I got home. Amelia was still crying when I got home. I was shaking – Lauren was in tears – Amelia knew it was BAD to cross the street – but she didn’t understand why she shouldn’t be outside by herself. We had to have a LONG talk. I asked her what she was doing – her reply, “Looking for someone to take me to the park, but no one was home!” I don’t know how many doors she knocked on before Lauren found her. I just THANK GOD she didn’t knock on the wrong door.

    Amelia still talks about that day – she knows to never do it again, in fact on the way home from the park a couple weeks ago she pointed at a house and said, “That’s where I went when I ran away.”

    I think EVERY parent has this happen – it’s just a matter of when.

    Thank goodness Miss Sarah didn’t leave your yard!ReplyCancel

  • Cindy - OMG. I would have flipped out. I cannot even imagine. When I was 3 I disappeared from my parents backyard and walked 1 mile away to our local store. All by myself. The police brought me home and my parents didn’t even know I was missing. Our security system in our house chimes every time the door opens and the sales guy told us it was a good feature to have with kids. So sorry you had to go through this but thankfully everything turned out ok.ReplyCancel

  • Sharie - Oh – I know I just left a long post, but just to prove it could be worse…One of the little boys that goes to daycare with Amelia got out of his house a few weeks ago. He’s a really small 3 year-old and a HUGE stinker. His Mom couldn’t find him, so called the police. They found him wandering around the Lowe’s parking lot a couple blocks from their house.

    Horrible- but also funny because when the police tried to get him he kept running and he had 2 officers chasing him around the Lowe’s parking lot.ReplyCancel

  • Marla - Thanks for sharing, this does remind us that things do happen in a split second and we always have to be on our toes. I know I benefited from this post and that shows what a good mom you are to think of your blogging buddies.ReplyCancel

  • Christy - You so cannot be too hard on yourself. I have had situations like that happen to me as well– with the boys and with mia. It totaly freaks you out when it happens– BUT– it happens. You cannot have fort knox and you dont have guards posted at each door, so it is bound to happen to the best of us. I have had the Target scares and the on the wrong side of the pool fence scares and yes, even the outside of the house and no idea how they got there scares. Dont be too hard on yourself!!


    Christy :)ReplyCancel

  • Colleen - Ohhhhhh big hugs!!! I’m so thankful she was just fine. I can imagine how scary that was for you. Don’t be too hard on yourself…we all have those frightening moments as parents. This will be one of those stories you will always remember and tell her over and over!ReplyCancel

  • jenbusymom - Oh Lisa, I totally hear you on the one! I think this happens to every parent at some time or other and it’s a true wake up call when it does! I remember the days when the girls though it was funny to hide from me in stores! There’s a reason for our gray hairs once we have children! Glad nothing bad happened!ReplyCancel

  • Dawn - Lisa,

    How scary! Our oldest did the same thing when he was about two. Scared the daylights out of us and I think by our reactions, it scared him!!

    You are wonderful mother and such a sweet person….don’t be so hard on yourself. The fact is, it is not something that sweet Sarah had done before, so you really had no reason to believe that was something that she was going to do!

    Our house alarm has a setting (which I use) that 3 beeps go off when a window or door is opened. The alarm is actually not set as if you were away or asleep as night, but it does beep when a door or window gets opened. I love it, cause I can always tell if the boys are going out or coming back in!!!

    Take care~~


  • Felicia - You’re a great mommy and I’m glad you went ahead and posted. As mommies we should be supporting each other and not judging — it could easily happen to any of us!

    I bet you were freaked out when you opened the door. Glad she is safe and sound!ReplyCancel

  • Wanda - I’m almost speechless. My heart was in my throat reading this. I just can’t imagine.

    Thank you for sharing this (and I can’t believe anyone would even begin to entertain a thought of judging you). We have all been in the exact same spot but perhaps nothing happened as a result is the only difference.

    I wish you peace (and some sleep too).ReplyCancel

  • Joanne - Oh you must have been petrified!! You just reminded me to put the “chime” on our alarm system, this way a bell will ring if anyone opens the door! Take a deep breathe, everything is fine…ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - I’m always telling our six year old to tell us before he goes outside! No judging from this mama!

    I finally figured out that I can set our alarm system so that the door chimes each time it is opened. If you have a security system,try that.ReplyCancel

  • Number 6 and no more counting! - Oh I hear the fear in you coming out through this story. I feel for you Lisa. We have all been there in one way or another. I am sorry you are going through this.

    BTW, I had no idea that you girl is only 2.5 years old! She looks much older.

    Hang in there my friend.


  • Jennifer - Oh my! Bless your heart! I know that scared ya’ll to death.

    On a lighter note get the girl some squeaky shoes and you’ll know if you don’t hear her you need to start looking. :)

    I got your note earlier. I am feeling great thanks! :)ReplyCancel

  • 3D - That would make any parent scared and could happen to any parent. Do not be too hard on yourselves. Hugs!

    Keep smilin!ReplyCancel

  • Carol VR - We’ve all been there. Dakota escaped at about the same age and wound up at the neighbours to which she gave us a quick call.ReplyCancel

  • Casey - I did tell you about the zoo, right?? HAHA!! I would NEVER judge this story. Girl … it has happened to the best of parents. Kiddos are smart.

    I am SOOOO glad to hear she is alright… It’s tough when they are smart too. :) Many hugs!!ReplyCancel

  • Our Complete Family - This is why I’ll be gray by the time I’m 35…I know Caroline will try something like this! 😉

    So you don’t feel alone in this moment, here is something Bryce did to us in his younger days~

    We took a jaunt to France when he was 4. While in The Louvre and gawking at some amazing art, he decided to mad dash to the escalator and yes, you guessed it, was quickly on his way up, up, up!

    Jason and I freaked out and pushed past folks to get to him. Talk about heart dropping right out of my chest moment.
    It was all in a split second, but so very scary.

    Things happen to all of us parents like this. You are a great Momma. Don’t be upset with yourself sweetie.
    Love and hugs, Les :)ReplyCancel

  • The Byrd's Nest - Oh my….I’ll bet you didn’t sleep a wink that night. We all have at least one child like Sarah and it is so very hard because they are so independent and self thinkers. Sometimes it just takes something like this to happen to let you know to change some things and you reacted appropriately! You are a great Mom!ReplyCancel

  • Robin - {{HUGS}}ReplyCancel

  • Keisha - From the looks of the comments.. we’ve all had something like this happen to us. It is Very scary! It’s good that you guys put that “fear” in her, so she won’t do it again. I just got tickled reading Sandy Toes’ comment..”Put the Fear of God in Them!” SHE is RIGHT!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Doug and Terrye - DON’T beat yourself up!!! I think that this is a common thing, and thankfully it all turned out well! I have a 26 yr old, a 22 yr old, and a 4 yr old, and I’ve had at least one (the 26 yr old) escape from my clutches, he turned up at the backdoor when we thought he was in bed for the night. We adjusted our home security alarm to beep every time a door or window is opened, but I still am nervous :)

    Terrye in FLReplyCancel

  • RaizenBoyz - Door chimes!!! That is the only way I know if a door has been opened, we have one with our alarm system. All of us mother’s have experienced a ‘lost’ child at some point. Don’t be hard on yourself.ReplyCancel

  • Debra - Bless you heart Lisa. I know you guys were scared out of your minds. So thankful that all ended well. Your little one is quite spunky! The alarm sounds like a terrific answer.
    Best wishes,ReplyCancel

  • The Things We Carried - Lisa,

    This has happened to me and to my friends. It is TOTALLY Possible that it could happen to anyone.
    My two year old once climbed out the living room window in winter, via climbing on to the back of the couch, early in the morning, while we were all still sleeping. i awoke to a child crying outside. I jumped up, looked out my bedroom window and there was my toddler, wandering in his diaper, in a few inches of snow. I was so confused. I rushed downstairs, where the house was icy cold, and the living room window was slid wide open and the screen was pushed out. He had opened that window and jumped down, but could not get back in. It terrified me to know he had been gone, outside, in the snow, and none of us knew!!! It CAN happen to any of us!


  • Vivie - Lisa , don’t beat yourself up!

    I’m not a mother but it happened to me once when I was still a college student , I lived in a hostel that was for students only , and I often babysat the superindents’ daughter.

    I went outside to bin the garbage , telling her not to move(she was playing pc games).when I came back she wasn’t here.I immediately went to check if she had gone to find her dad.She hadn’t.Imagine us running up and down stairs all five floors! I even went out to the road to see if she was walking outside.

    all that time she was hiding under my bed , and I heard her when I got back to my room that I rented for a drink , all this running had wore me out.and I am hard of hearing too , so she made pretty much noise!I told her that there is no hiding without permission or anything , EVER.And to impress her , I did give her a light slapping on her butt.That got her attention , and she didn’t do it again.Her mother later got the whole story, and she was thankful that happened to me , she’d have fainted! LOL!

    When kids will try to be independent , or explore , or just try to hide without your knowing, they’re big stinkers! To this day I keep an eagle eye to any kid I’m looking after and never let them out of my sight for long.

    I beat myself up for ages , and was v guilty I had gone out for five minutes.but she was so quiet , playing computer games..and I had done that millions of other times and she never moved!

    So just hang in there , and it’s a valuable lesson and I think Miss Sarah won’t do it again , you scared her properly.Sometimes it’s so fine art to discover where is the line of parenting , if you are the parent or a baby sitter , or a caregiver.ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - Know this you are a great and mommy that adores her kids and she is an adventurous soul! There is good in this too that when she is old enough she won’t be afraid of life. That my friend is a great thing. Just a different perspecitve. I love it that you care so big with your kids and husband. No one can even read an entry of any post you give and not see that bigger than any image. Awesome you are!ReplyCancel

  • Ivy - Hey Lisa,
    I escaped for an hour when I was a tot and my Mom still tells me the story of how she found my baby doll carriage by itself outside! I know the times were a bit different then, but being a mom now, I would have completely FREAKED!

    I’m so glad nothing happened and also I commend you for sharing this story so others may realize just how quick these toddlers are! Good thing she likes the doorbell and alerted you and I’m sure she won’t do it again, because I’ll have Dani put lo-jacks in both our girls:))

    Hey don’t beat yourself up! You’re a wonderful Mommy and she’s just being a typical tot and exploring her bounderies.

    Thanks for sharing the story Lisa. Hugs to that curious girl of yours too:))ReplyCancel

  • Missy - Bless your heart, Lisa! I can only imagine how scared you and Pat must have been. As everyone else stated, these things happen. You are one of the most consciencious (sp?) moms that I know. Don’t beat yourself up over this and thanks for sharing so that others can benefit from your experience. Hug that baby for me.ReplyCancel

  • Special K - Don’t beat yourself up over this. You’re a great mom. Sometimes things just happen that were meant to be a lesson. This is one of those things.

    I bet if I were to read thru the more than 50 comments left here I’d see a lot of people telling similar stories about how this happened to them. And when I get to a be a mom.. I’m sure I’ll be one of them, too. :)ReplyCancel

  • hootsmom - Lisa, don’t beat yourself up. Kids are kids and they get away from us sometimes. Praise God that he protected her. They are FAST little stinkers and they so want to show us that they are big. No judgement from this mamma. Love SALReplyCancel

  • Fliss and Mike Adventures - Yeah, that would be truly scary… that is my fear I have… I know… cause I done it when I was a kid but mum kicked my butt all the way home… I remember how she was mad… but I know now… she would have been scared… something is telling me she won’t be going outside on her own again…
    Like others are saying… don’t beat yourself up…
    On another note… sorry I haven’t been by to visit… life has been crazy…
    The closer we get to our LID… the more nervous and busy I feel like I am getting…
    Take careReplyCancel

  • Jennifer - Oh Lisa I am so sorry! I can only imagine how you must have felt! You are a good parent, things can just happen so quickly! I am so glad that Sarah was okay. I am sure she also learned a lesson, and so did the rest of us! I hope you are still having a wonderful summer.


  • Cori - I have followed your blog for awhile and really enjoy it. I went with a family that I nanny for to Disney World last year. The mom asked me to turn around so she could get something out of the backpack I had on, and the 5-year-old daughter was gone when we looked up. She had just wandered around the corner, but it was crowded and scary.

    You didn’t mention this, but maybe put locks up high on your doors, well out her reach?

  • Debz - Oh your poor heart!
    I think we have all had situations that scared the dickens out of us.
    Your right it really only takes a second.
    Bless you,
    I love your trans”parent”sy ;O)ReplyCancel

  • 3 Peanuts - I am sure that was so scary. Please do not beat yourself up…from everything I have read here…you are a GREAT parent. Kids do this stuff. No one has left our front door but I did lose Will and HArry for hours in a park a week after Kate came home from China (I nearly died). I am SO SO SO glad she is okay.ReplyCancel

  • paige - oh sweet lisa
    i’m sure your mommyheart is just so tender right now. and yes, it only takes a split second. we can just get eaten up with guilt when something like that happens and equally eaten up with just the pressure to try to protect them 24/7. not to discourage you at all, but the older my girls have gotten the more keenly aware i am of that fear.
    sometimes i think when i’m stuck in traffic or inconvenienced in someway that the lord might be using that inconvenience to protect me from something else. there’s an oldie amy grant song that says ” a reckless car ran out of gas before it ran my way”. i think of that often….how many times we are protected by his angels yet we are blissfully unaware.
    praying your heart settles down & you feel safe again for your beautiful baby girl
    hugs to you

  • EllieNat - I think this happens more than we want to talk about. I once lost my daughter in the grocery store–didn’t know she was lost until I happened to see her terrified face as I was walking down a grocery aisle. (I thought she was with Dad too!) Everyone was safe, but we all learned a valuable lesson. My daughter NEVER wanders off anymore!

    So glad that Sarah is safe.ReplyCancel

  • nanc - So scary! I have a friend who’s son did that at 2 a.m. — got in their car and started honking the horn — woke all the neighbors. He’s such a fun spunky little guy.ReplyCancel

  • Sherri - It’s all been said in the 68 comments above mine!! You are a great mother Lisa. I would trust you with my children :)ReplyCancel

  • Life with Kaishon - Oh my gosh! So scary! I don’t think you are a bad mother at all. I lost Kaishon at the mall when he was 3. Oh yes I did.ReplyCancel

  • carolinagirl - I can totally relate to this…something similar happened with Brendan just recently. He thought I knew he was going to a neighborhood friend’s house and I didn’t. I freaked out and was walking down the street shouting his name. I couldn’t find him for 20 minutes, and I was scared to death!!!!!!!!!! It is amazing how quickly things can get out of control!ReplyCancel

  • ED Blogger - For every difficult situations we learn and I know you learned a lot. From that we are confident that nothing alike will happen again.

    Deep breaths… Sarah is okay :)ReplyCancel

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