Trigger warning: Discussion of kidnapping, Missing, Murder, Accident Death, losing children.
We see it every day online and on the television, young children and teenagers going missing. I’ve shared posts when the police ask for public help or when there’s an amber alert. My heart always squeezes as I worry about what is happening to that missing person and about the agony their family and loved one may be in. You hug your own children tighter and remind them to be safe out there and online.
When a girl went missing at my kid’s school. It was a shock for everyone. Way too close to home. The school reacted amazingly and so did the local authorities. Search teams were organized. Everyone who had seen or heard something came forward. We all shared her picture online hoping to find her quickly. So many scenarios go through your mind. No matter how bad you feel, it can only be a billion time worst for her parents. Everyone’s hearts were breaking. Every parent was worried that there was a predator lurking around.
A few days later, they found the girls body. A parent’s worst nightmare. She’s not my kid and I cried. Psychologists and authorities swarm my kid’s school to help children through this crisis. There was still no word’s on what had happened to her. Once again, our collective minds filled with so many sinister scenarios. We felt guilty for feeling so deeply about the situation because no matter what we felt, it is so much worst for this poor child’s family.
The authorities were good to keep us updated during all the proceedings. It’s then that I realize that they don’t have only to worry about the person direct family, but about an entire community who stopped breathing and functioning properly when that girl went missing.
It turned out to be a tragic stupid accident. She drank alcohol during lunch, skipped class, slipped and fell into a body of water that froze over. From the information that we have, this wasn’t a troubled kid. Probably her first act of rebellion. As most parents are breathing in relief that there is no danger going after their own children, I can’t imagine what her parents are going through. My heart is breaking at the thought. For the rest of us, life continues, but for them, life will never be the same.