Late last week, the sun was shining, the warm air of spring was moving into town, and Lia was sleeping peacefully in her crib. Vivienne and I decided to venture out back to plant a dying tulip bulb. I opened the kitchen window, turned on the baby monitor, and we took off through the back door.
After planting the bulb, I heard Lia’s cry through the kitchen window. I walked Vivienne across the street to play with our neighbors and bipped back home to get Lia (I was planning on nursing her and then returning outside).
I tried to enter through the garage door, which I thought was certainly unlocked. It didn’t budge. Locked. Shoot.
So, I ran around back to enter through the back door, but it was locked. My heart sped up in fear and confusion. Didn’t we just exit through that same door? I listened through the window for Lia’s cry and didn’t hear a thing. Silence. And all locked doors.
What in the world could have happened in the 2 seconds (literally) that I was walking Vivienne across the street?!
My instant (and clearly logical) conclusion was that someone had somehow entered our home, locked all of the doors and taken my baby! (If you are a mother, you know that this is the scariest moment! And you know that the most unfeasible things seem perfectly realistic in moments like this.)
I ran back across the street in a panic to seek my level-headed neighbor’s advice. She suggested that we ask our elderly neighbors to help us watch the kids and take the door off of the hinges. While she ran to sequester their help, I was squinting through our windows, rapidly praying, “Lord, what in the world did I do?! How are all of the doors locked?! What has happened to my baby?!”
God graciously answered as I realized that no one had entered our home and locked the doors; rather, I had closed the back door without unlocking the doorknob. I also realized that I had left the kitchen window open and that, with a ladder, I could probably hoist myself into the house.
While level-headed neighbor watched the kids, our elderly neighbor helped me try that window. We set the ladder up against the house and I cranked the window out all of the way. He secured the ladder while I tried to pull myself into the window. It was probably pretty clear that I wasn’t going to make the jump from the ladder to the window ledge without some help. Before I knew it, my dear old neighbor planted both hands on my bum and pushed me into the kitchen sink. I was able to unlock the back door, check in on my peacefully sleeping baby, and breathe a sigh of thanksgiving and relief.
My only concern now was that MY NEIGHBOR HAD TOUCHED MY BUM! I’ll never ever ever be able to face him again, I thought. He’s going to tell all of his friends that he touched my bum! I’m so embarrassed! I’m humiliated! I’m mortified! We’ll have to redefine our relationship! What if his wonderful wife ever finds out?!
Later, I confessed my embarrassing situation to my level-headed neighbor who nodded, saying he had already told her and his wife as much. “Yeah, he said he had to give you the old heave-ho.”
The old heave-ho? That’s all it was? Those words had never sounded so sweet!
One thing is for sure: an over-active imagination is exhausting!