So everyone was going in different directions this evening, I had finals, Ethan had a playdate, Gabi had a practice of some sort, and Meg was going to study with at friend's. Eventually we all ended up back at home, and I was *beat*. Meg and her friend needed to go to the library, but friend's mom was driving them, and Gabi was going to a party, but someone else was driving, so E and I were just relaxing, talking about what to make for dinner.
Ethan heads outside to jump on the tramp, and Meg heads out for the library, then runs back in a few minutes later because she forgot her books. She left again. A little while later she came back in and ran upstairs. Gabi comes racing down the stairs in a panic, the party was starting in 10 minutes and her friends car wouldn't start, could I give them a ride? I hollered up to Meg that I was running G to the party, E's outside so she needs to keep an ear out for him.
Off we go across base. Pick up G's friend and head for the party. As we pass the library, I see Megan coming out the front door with her friend, so I honk and wave.
One of my kids in the car with me and one of my kids is walking out of the library. That's two kids. But I have three kids.
WHERE'S THE THIRD KID????????
Crap. My mind is racing, back tracking over the last few hours. Is he still at school? Have I momentarily forgtten that he's at a friends house? Did I forget that'd I'd actually brought him, but he's hiding behind the back seat? (All of these scenarios have actually occured). Did Megan bring him with her to the library? I rolled down the window and asked her where he was. "I thought he was with you?!" Double crap.
I flipped a U-y and flew back home. And there he was, jumping on the trampoline. Completely oblivious that his entire family had deserted him. Apparently, the second time Meg came back in, she was just grabbing her wallet for the library adn somehow she got downstairs (5 feet from where I was sitting) and back out of the house without me noticing.
It was only a few minutes, and he's not a wanderer, he wouldn't have left the yard, and I've left him home alone before to run up the street to grab milk, but the thought of him going into the house and finding no one there, with no clue where everyone had gone just made me feel horrible. I don't know why. I'm not sure he would have even noticed that no one else was home.
I'm normally very scatter-brained, easily distracted and forgetful, so this whole event was never out of the realm of possibility, but this is the first time I've actually gone off and left one of my kids somewhere (I think).