Friday, October 7, 2016

Secret Subject Swap: Terror and Judgment

Welcome a Secret Subject Swap. This month 12 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. Read through mine and at the bottom you’ll find links to all of today’s other Secret Subject participants.


Secret Subject Swap | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics


My subject is: Boo! Tell us the scariest thing that has ever happened to you!
It was submitted by: Rabia of The Lieber Family Blog.

I'm warning you now, this post is not going to be what you'd expect. Yes, I'm going to tell you about the scariest thing that has ever happened to me. But it's a different kind of scary. Terrifying nonetheless.

There was a lot of talk this past May when a 3 year old boy climbed/fell into the enclosure, at the Cincinnati Zoo, where Harambe, a large male gorilla was housed. The gorilla grabbed the young boy, jerked him around. The mother and other spectators were mortified, frantically calling 911. In the end, the Zoo officials had to make the heartbreaking call to kill Harambe.

And the interned exploded.

People chastised, no crucified, the mom. They berated the Zoo and their decision to remove the danger to the child in the only way they could in that moment. The Zoo had to shut down their social media accounts as the only way to stop not only the harassment, but their exposure to the "humorous" memes.

As the criticism grew to a fever pitch, especially towards the mom, I was appalled. How can people be so judgemental? Has no one ever looked away from a young child for a moment?

I had.

When College Boy was about 5 and PurDude about 4, we were visiting my sister and her family back in Boston. It was a warm summer afternoon and we were all out front. My sister, her husband and son, her in laws, my husband and sons, my mom and step father and I. We were all spending a leisurely day enjoying the weather and preparing to have dinner together.


 Vegetable Rotini with Chicken in Pumpkin Cream Sauce, a Fall dinner casserole with a hint of pumpkin | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dinner

Vegetable Rotini with Chicken in Pumpkin Cream Sauce


Suddenly we see a flash out of the corner of our eyes and realize that the dog has gotten out. This dog, a Huskie, could run. Panic and pandemonium ensued. Some of us ran down the street to the left, some to the right, others ran straight ahead, all calling to the dog. My brother in law jumped in the car and drove off, hoping to cover more ground that way. I remember standing on the sidewalk in front of the house, slowly circling, searching to see if I could catch a glimpse of the dog.

A few minutes later, I turned from looking off to the right to look again up to the left. What I saw haunts me to this day. Just turning the corner onto the street on which I'm standing, I see a woman walking towards me. Holding the hand of my 4 year old. 

She looked at me and said "does he belong to someone here?" I thought I saw disapproval on her face but that might have just been projection. Doesn't matter. No one disapproved of me in that moment more than I did.

I grabbed that little boy and hugged him. I hugged him like I'd never let go. I hugged him like I knew I might have never hugged him again.

And I thanked that woman. Profusely. Endlessly.

I will never. I mean never judge a mother who looks away for a minute. Because I did. It turned out for me. Lucky me. But seeing that woman walking towards me holding my son's hand? That was the most humbling, paralyzing, terrifying experience. And let me tell you, it does not diminish with time. It has the same visceral intensity now as it had in that mortifying moment almost 20 years ago. 

And when that child fell into Harambe's enclosure, I went immediately back to that day in Boston. The horrifying terror returned. Along with an overwhelming empathy for that mom. No one, publicly or privately, will judge her more harshly than she will herself. 

Well beyond that day. For the rest of her life.




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Vegetable Rotini with Chicken in Pumpkin Cream Sauce
                                                                          ©www.BakingInATornado.com
 
Printable Recipe
 
Ingredients:
12 oz vegetable rotini
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt, pepper, onion powder
2 TBSP olive oil, divided
1 onion, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/4 cup (plus more for sprinkling) grated parmesan
paprika

Directions:
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 X 13 baking pan.
*Cut the chicken into bite size pieces. Heat 1 TBSP olive oil in a saute pan on medium heat. Add the chicken, sprinkle with salt, pepper and onion powder. Cook and stir until juices run clear.
*Drain the chicken and add to the pot with the pasta.
*Wipe the saute pan with a paper towel and return to the stove. Add the other TBSP olive oil and the onion. Cook and stir until onion is soft. Add the heavy cream, pumpkin, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper and nutmeg to the pan. Whisk.
*Cook and stir the sauce just until it boils. Turn off heat and whisk in 1/4 cup parmesan.
*Add the sauce to the pot with the pasta and chicken. Mix well, then add to the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle with more parmesan, then paprika. Cover with foil.
*Bake for 35 minutes until completely hot and sauce bubbles.

27 comments:

  1. How scary! I had a moment like that with my little not to long ago, we were near a pond though, and it was terrifying! Luckily she was fine!

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    1. I know just how you felt. We're both very lucky.

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  2. I've had a couple of those moments as did my parents (I wandered off a lot when I was little).

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    1. I think most of us have, which is why we should not be judging each other.

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  3. I'm sitting in the waiting room and figured I'd do some reading. I had something similar happen when my son was 2 1/2. My husband's sister had come in with all 6 of her children while we were preparing to go trick or treating. As all of those little heads come in no one saw the littlest on go out. Had wandered around the back into the woods. Even though it was only a few minutes it seemed much longer and I'll never forget those feelings...ever!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I cannot believe you're reading from the waiting room. Only you!

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  4. Oh, my word! Every mom can sympathise! And maybe that is why so many of them came down on that mom. I still break out in a cold sweat when I think of the time I dropped off my kindergartener at school and left, not realizing it was Friday and he had no school on Fridays. And he tried to walk home (we lived out of town on a farm) and got hopelessly lost and was brought back to the school an hour later by a block parent. SHIVER...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, exactly, a cold sweat. Just like being there all over again.

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  5. Totally agree with you. Excellent post. So many perfect parents and child authorities behind computer screens. I let my 3 month old fall off the table, he once went running into the street and by the grace of God my husband caught him in time. It only takes a second and the judging needs to stop.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Social media is at its best when it connects us and at its worst when it lets us harm each other.

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  6. I suspect that many more people than you think have a "it only took a second" story. My then two year old son ran out of a restaurant and right into an alley, right in front of a delivery truck coming down same alley. You try to safeguard them every second but that's all it takes - a second. And yes the judging needs to stop. Alana ramblinwitham.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As much as these stories make me cringe, it's good to hear them. It reminds us all that we all have them.

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  7. What a frightening experience! My son got lost at a daycare when he was only three. There was a big program going on that day with the parents & kids, which meant a mass exodus at the end of the show. Somehow, my 3 yr. old slipped out the door without the teacher knowing---and I was standing nearby. Never saw him leave. The longest 15 minutes of my life passed until I found my little guy OUT IN THE PARKING LOT!!! I've been paranoid ever since, and I totally understand what you mean about the mother of the little boy at the zoo. We have ALL been that mom at one point or another.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I think we all have. And we all ended up lucky.

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  8. I agree a million percent and I have done the same thing. I still shudder when I think about it

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seems everyone can relate. I hope the next time it's public, everyone can sympathize.

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  9. Many years ago, I saw my neighbor's toddler walking down the middle of our street toward the super busy cross street at the end of our block. I went running outside (my children were safely at the dinner table with their father), scooped him up, and carried him back to his home. His mother was in the kitchen fixing dinner and his father was working in the backyard. Each thought the child was with the other. To this day, 30 years later, we still talk about that day and thank the Lord that it all worked out fine.

    I know exactly how you felt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds like you do. Hard to be terrified and grateful all at once, but that's exactly how it feels.

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  10. I have a similar story with Baby Girl. It still haunts me and gives me nightmares.

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    Replies
    1. You never forget the panic of those moments, do you?

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  11. Oh my gosh! That is scary! I lost Ben at a soccer game last season. I had sent him to the bathroom with Frances and then Henry went later to join them. They were taking forever, so I thought they must be goofing off and I went to check on them. Henry and Frances were standing outside the bathroom wandering back and forth. I asked what was going on. They told me they didn't know where Ben was. I sent them back to our seats to look for him, and I called around the bathrooms. I even sent another boy in there to see if Ben was in there. I was just about to barge into the men's restroom myself when Ben waltzed out without a care in the world. I asked him why he had responded. His response? "I wanted privacy!" I could decide whether to shake him or hug him!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know that feeling well. Hug. Then hug.Then hug. Then shake!

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  12. People should mind their own business.
    When Colin was 4 we were in Geneva, French part of Switzerland, so he could not speak to the nice ladies who picked him up when he was wandering off, looking at the flags... Did I mention it was right by the lake, no fence or anything?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And I bet you can still feel that panic when you think about it.

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    2. Actually, thinking back, it's more the relief of hugging him AFTER! While looking for him I was like in trance, so that bit didn't stick.

      Delete

Warning: Comment at your own risk. I have Comment Moderation, meaning I approve all comments before they show up here. So go ahead, I'm not scared!