Thursday, July 12, 2007

Little Boy Lost

The elevator opened and out walked a little boy. He was all alone, about two years old, with a binky firmly plugged in his mouth. I said, "Hi! Who do you belong to?" He just looked at me and started toddling towards the hall, like he knew where he was going. I took his hand and said, "Let's go find your mom."

He wasn't worried, or afraid of me. He didn't even know he was lost. I wondered if anyone knew he was lost. Our building has eight floors, each with 35 apartments, and three elevators. Plus our apartment complex has a second, taller building connected with a hallway. There's an additional entrance lobby over there, and there are underground parking levels for both buildings. This little guy could have come from anywhere! Maybe he'd just wandered out his front door and caught a ride, and nobody had noticed his getaway.

I punched all the buttons and we rode down together, holding hands. At each stop I stepped out and looked around, and then we continued our ride. Finally the door opened on a woman who was crying, hanging onto three little kids of various ages, frantically talking to one of our managers. I knew we'd found Mom. She scooped up my little friend and hugged him, saying to me, "Thank you, oh thank you so much!"

It turns out they were visiting someone, and while the mom was figuring out which way to go, her little boy disappeared. The elevator must have opened, he walked in unnoticed, and when I rang for it on the 7th floor, the doors closed and he was on his way. It had only been a minute or two, but when you've lost your baby, that's a long, long time.

Have you ever wandered into a part of your life and felt lost? Or maybe you didn't even know you were lost yet, but others noticed you were missing and set out to find you. I think it happens a lot. We get caught in the thick of thin things, and lose sight of our priorities.

I read somewhere that on a regular basis we should ask ourselves:
  1. Who are the most important people in my life? Do I spend the time with them?
  2. What is my #1 goal right now? Did I spend any time this week working towards it?
  3. What makes me happy? When was the last time I did it?
  4. Am I contributing anything positive to the world?
  5. Am I becoming who I want to be?
We all get off on the wrong floor occasionally, and wander purposefully, though aimlessly until someone points out that maybe we're lost. Here's to finding the way back!

13 comments:

mama jo said...

that was great..what good questions to ask...you always come up with such intereting things to write about...i lost kerry once..it's an awful feeling...thanks for saving the day...

Stie: My Favorite Things said...

That WAS great. Sometimes I feel like that lost little kid hoping someone will grab my hand and take me to the right floor. What thought-provoking words you have for us today!

Bev said...

certainly I know this feeling....just wishing sometimes that there was an instruction manual stapled to my backside to be refered to as needed....this seems especially true when I'm having one of those times when I'm thinking about mistakes made and the "should have/could have" all about what might have been....

not ready to go there today, too much else going on

Walker Family said...

Always a good reminder to stop and check where we are every day! I think I'm usually lost--it takes my husband to help me figure out where I need to be going--good thing I "found" him!

Em said...

I have really loved reading your blog, and this post in particular really stood out to me. I hope you don't mind me stealing those 5 points at the bottom?. Oh yeah, thanks for raising Marta. I love her.

gab said...

i'm so glad that cute boy in the photo was not the "lost" one...although i don't know what he is actually doing at the moment...

rp said...

Wow! That poor mother. My son has gotten out of my range of sight, and it scared me half to death. Glad you were there to find that little boy!

As a child I was lost once, and it was, and still is, a very intense fear that climbed its way up my spine. Being lost on a metaphysical level is no less frightening, once you realize you are lost. Your checklist will be very useful, thank you.

Anonymous said...

I just have to de-lurk. I have been reading your blog for months now. You are HUGELY influential in my life. Coming out of the "lurking" closet just might change things for me. Thanks for all you do!

Annie said...

How lucky for the lost boy that you were on the other side of the opening doors!

Great questions that should be a part of my day more often. Cheers to you ~

Joy Des Jardins said...

I can feel the panic that poor mother felt....it's the worst thing in the world when you're worried about one of your children. Thank God you were there Marty...friendly, nurturing and wise. So glad the little guy was calm during it all.

Bridget said...

I'm sure that mother will never forget you. Very insightful questions too. Great post.

Kay Dennison said...

I am coming off a pretty bad thing for me and this list is going to be taped to my desk. To remind me what I need to remember to get through all of it.

MissKris said...

I've written several times, in varying fashion, about this on my blog too, Marty. My 'epiphany' year of 1999 where more Life Lessons were crammed into one particular year of my life than there ever were before or since. Other than the day I became a Christian in 1976, I consider that my "re-birthday". It took a long time, but that was when I truly found the ME inside who'd always been there but I'd never taken the time to get acquainted with. And you know what?! I really like her, too...she's become my best friend! ;-)