Welcome to October! Can you believe it? I'm still trying to figure out what happened to August; ha!
Well I took a couple of days off because we had a huge scare in our home and I lost my marble for a couple of days. Now that I'm a little more relaxed Tuesday I'll be jumping back into my daily chapter overviews with a personal punch of "Girl, wash your face" by Rachel Hollis. I'm sure she'd appreciate my dedication lmao. Today though I want to stupidly share what happened. Stupidly because i know it opens me up to being judged by all who read my words.
As some of you know my oldest, Little Man, is autistic. He is non-verbal and what I like to call a silent ninja. He has started to talk a lot more and he babbles all the time. I am so excited because I just know one day he's gonna wake up talking up a storm. ANYWAY.. some kids with autism are runners. They will run and not stop when you yell their name. They don't sense the danger and think it's fun to be chased. That is my son.
Last Wednesday someone didn't dead bolt the front door. I was cutting 10 single green grapes for Little Dude's dinner. I just happened to look up at the mirror over my sink, to see a vehicle stopped at my driveway. Totally out of the normal even for the six o'clock rush.. something in me froze. I literally jumped the kitchen gate and ran out the front door. Low and behold this lady was standing in the road holding my son and in tears. She said she almost hit him, he was running down the driveway and just bolted in front of her. Her poor shooken soul. I grabbed him up, hugged him, listened to her 'watch your kids please' as I walked up the driveway. The thing is... he had just been standing at that gate asking to "eat". I was explaining that I was waiting on the grapes and we'd eat. I had no idea he had opened the front door and closed it behind him. The dog siren didn't go off.. not a sound. THIS could have been SO much worse. It could have been fatal. This could have been a completely different outcome. In true mothers fashion.. i made him sleep with me that night (after just getting him back into his bed.. oy vey). I was terrified to let him go to school, but he did, and I made sure to tell our ABA therapist about what happened.
I waited until he was fast asleep to call one of my best friends. I told her what happened in sobs. Half she asked me to keep repeating. All i kept thinking was how i let this happened, how could i not have had checked the door? WHY didn't the four dogs bark like usual?? HOW could i let my son just walk out of the house unknowingly? Why didn't I just put him in the booster seat - it was 10 grapes! I felt like the worst Mother on the planet. We don't have a lot of strict rules in this house but one of the biggest ones is to bolt the doors and shut the gates. They are in place for a reason.
The next day I sobbed to my other best friend in WA .. both friends interjected ideas and door solutions. At the end of the day.. the only thing you have to do is dead bolt the door. IT'S THAT SIMPLE. I don't need a fancy alarm or ten locks.. just dead bolt the door. I say that but I went out and bought a new dead bolt system from NEST. I can check to make sure the dead bolt is locked by an app on my phone, and I can lock/unlock the door from the car (super cool). We all have codes to enter into the house instead of keys. My brother bought us those chime sensors .. you add them to the crack of the door and when the door is opened it makes a insanely loud chime. I jump every. single. time. it goes off.. so it's doing it's job. We added a baby gate to the exit into the backyard - so he can't exit the garage and we added a motion spot light into the back yard. I know a day will come when he will figure out the lock. I know one day we will have to make extra extra measures but right now it's just simple. Dead bolt the door and shut the gates.
My husband is still gone. He has about another two weeks before he returns. He has no idea this happened. He has no idea I dropped three bills on a dead bolt and I'm scared to tell him what happened in person. It sucks, it's hard. I still feel like shit and he's been under my wing all weekend. I have taken him everywhere with me because I was that shook. I think I check the stupid app to the door lock like 20 million times a day too but everyone in the house has been super vigilant. I hold no blame towards anyone b/c mistakes happen but this one almost cost me my sons life.
My fear is that this will wear off with everyone in the house, myself included, because you feel safe. My fear is that someone doesn't lock that door again and we don't catch it. My fear is that I'll end up in jail over a unlocked dead bolt.
I'm basically a single Mom with three kids. I hold the ground to my house. If you can't follow the simple steps that I have put into place to keep my kids safe.. then you aren't welcome here. Unfortunately, I can't afford to be gracious about it now. People it scared me. It rattled my bones. SO while I send a prayer of thankfulness to the man upstairs, I'm also sending prayer of vigilance to my housemates.
Like I said our weekend got better, we collectively took steps to make sure this doesn't happen again. We all were very vigilant in making sure alarms and doors were set. I'm praying nothing like this ever happens again. If like me, you have a runner, you aren't alone. It's scary, but you become wiser by every thing that happens. You do better and you become more aware. I've said it alot lately but I was reminded all week .. we aren't perfect. We aren't meant to be and sometimes things get out of our control. The lesson is to learn from it and pray that you take all the right measures and it never happens again.
What a way to end September. Here is to believing that October will be a thousand times better!!