It’s a quarter past eleven and Chubby just fell asleep beside me. I have a list of items to pack for tomorrow and work to catch up with, but they can wait till the morning breaks. Right now, I need this moment to pen down my thoughts and enjoy the sound of his sweet breathing-something I will cherish more now, especially after I almost lost him in the mall earlier today.
Sundays are often the best and worst days for us. On Sundays, our helper goes on leave. With lesser help, 3 kids and a pregger around, we’d stick to our usual Sunday routine to keep things as manageable as possible. We would spend the morning in church, lunch out, head home for some rest before we meet up with either of our parents. But today wasn’t a usual Sunday. It was a friend’s wedding day and I really wanted to arrive at the banquet location before her walk-in at 12.15. This meant I would need to skip church to be on time. After much consideration, I decided to bring Chubby along with me so that hubby wouldn’t need to handle all 3 kids by himself. Besides, the girls were pretty excited about Sunday school today, it was a good friend’s birthday and they made cards and prepared gifts so it wont be nice to have them skip Sunday School with me.
The day started normally. We’d got the girls ready for Sunday School on time and Chubby couldn’t wait to leave the house already. He was all too excited to be out and going but we were still early for the wedding banquet and so I brought him to the mall to buy his much- anticipated Christmas present.
We visited our neighbourhood mall and went straight into Kiddy Palace, a very familiar retail shop to us. So familiar, we knew exactly where the toy was and wasted no time to get to it.
Perhaps it was the familiarity that made me put down my guard and lost my sight of Chubby while I was walking towards the toy section for assistance to claim my free gift. It was a few steps from the cashier counter and chubby was holding his precious Baymax. I must be out of my mind, but i thought he would follow behind but he didn’t. I looked back after a short while but couldn’t see him near by. At first i thought he must have gone to the cars or planes section, but nope, he wasn’t there. I started to panic and ran around the store like a mad woman screaming his name.
In a stage of confusion (and likely insanity and hysteria), I approached the counter for help and must have knocked down some toys along the way (sorry!). A few kind shoppers tried to calm me down and offered to help me find Chubby (thank you!), but I was inconsolable and a complete wreck; my brain wasn’t responding to anyone or anything. It was as if I was on a auto-screen mode and couldn’t register anything except the sight and sound of my kid. In that flash of a moment I scared myself with thoughts of what could have happened due to that 2-3 mins of neglect – I was devastated.
Soon the commotion had caught the attention of more shoppers and a crowd formed outside the store. Someone shouted,”I think it’s him!” My sight followed the voice keenly and saw my tiny little tot running towards the store with a huge plastic bag in one hand, crying “Mummy, Mummy!” Thank God, it was him! I ran over and picked him up. And we cuddled and cried together for a while. Holding him in my arms was such a relief!
I held Chubby close at bedtime today and showered him with extra kisses. I am just so glad to have my Chubby back. This is one big and painful lesson for the both of us. It must have scared the little boy much as he has been extra sticky today. In hindsight, I guess he wouldn’t refuse to hold my hand again and I shall be more careful when out with him.