Sunday, September 6, 2009

Scary mall moments

After watching Samuel run this morning at a X-C meet, the girls and I made somewhat of a day of it in Anchorage. We stopped by Skinny Raven first and spent way lots on specially made sneakers for Moriah (supposedly made for the way her feet pronate and supposedly helpful as she runs). They're kinda funky looking and have high wedge-like heels, but Moriah says they feel great so we have high hopes that running won't be as painful from now on.

Then we headed to the mall to do a tiny bit of shopping (read: Mom wanted to hit Eddie Bauer in case the capris I loved were on sale/in my size, which they were/weren't). We ate lunch first before heading to the clothing stores. The little girls fell in love with 'magic stairs' and we rode them a lot. A lot. After a few bargains were purchased, I was very ready to leave the mall with two very tired toddlers but I thought I'd like to pop into Gymboree to check out their sales.

That's when I lost Abigail for a few moments/minutes. (honestly I have no idea how long it was; it felt like an eternity) All four girls and I had just come out of JC Penney's, Moriah and Susannah sharing the responsibility of keeping track of the babes while there so we could all look at things. We had told the babes that we were going to find more 'magic stairs' (after riding them in Penney's), but those Gymboree sale signs were too tempting. I was assuming we had broken back into the 'big girls watch the little girls' formation so I could look at the sale racks when I heard Susannah ask "where's Abigail?"

I had Bethany next to me and thought Abigail was close by too. Nope. A quick check: no Abigail. I ran to the door of the store and did a quick scan of the three ways she could have walked away from the store, frantically recalling what she was wearing and looking for a bright pink shirt. (the mall has four floors, each of them wide and open with cut aways to look up and down between floors) Nothing. Turned back to the store, where Susannah was still doing a sweep of the clothing racks and the tv area. Nothing. I turned back (after a helpful associate asked if I was looking for anything in particular...uh, yes, my little daughter!) to the door and scanned again. Abigail was out in the hallway, almost to the escalators, a fair distance from the store. She had gone down one part of the hallway and had even turned a corner and had made it almost to the end of that next part of walkway. She was heading back in the direction of the store. I ran all out to go grab her, completely and utterly relieved and shocked she had gotten so far so quickly.

There was a security guard following her, about five feet behind. I shot him an extremely grateful look (and resisted the urge to defend myself) and hugged Abigail with all my might. Then we got the heck out of the mall (after riding the 'magic stairs' a couple more times)! :) We all think that Abigail was looking for the escalator when she walked off, since that was what I had told the little girls we were doing before my last minute jaunt into Gymboree.

Still feeling a little shocked and shaky about the whole thing. I have never had that happen before and I do NOT want it to ever happen again. Susannah was pretty freaked out too. She did so well, though, alerting me and helping me look. Moriah was great at keeping Bethany with her as I searched. I am so very thankful that our little 'girly' excursion ended just fine.

1 comment:

  1. Yikes, that is really scary. I'm glad she's okay, allbeit strong willed. My sister's little girl likes to run off and hide, so she has her very own little clip on teddy bear backpack (which of course is attached to a leash). It works great and like mother, like sister had to wear a leash growing up as well because she did the same thing.
    "Magic stairs", how funny, I can just picture them.