Sandy Point State Park will always be a memorable place for our family. Not because of all the fun we had when we visited it for the first time; but because every mom’s worst nightmares happened to me while we were there. I lost my daughter!
Summer is almost over, and I wanted to take the kids one more time to the beach before it ends. A friend of mine told me about Sandy Point State Park and how it’s only around an hour drive from where we live. This 786-acre Maryland State Park is located along the Northwestern shore of the majestic Chesapeake Bay, where you can hang out by the beach or have a picnic with your family. Today, on my birthday weekend, we decided to check it out.
The day started with the kids being excited to go the beach. As soon as we arrived, my husband set up our tent and the kids played in the sand right away. We had lunch an hour after we arrived and went back into playing soon after we were done. After a couple of hours, my son started asking for snacks so we all went back to our tent to grab some. However, their hands were full of sand so I asked my husband to wash their hands. He took our daughter with him; while I stayed in the tent with our son preparing our snack. A few minutes later, my husband came back and asked “Where is Alex?”. I answered back “I thought she was with you?”
He didn’t say anything, he just walked back and tried to find her. That’s when I started to panic. I quickly got out of our tent, called her name and tried to find her in the crowded beach. Thoughts quickly flooded my mind as to where she could be; it was absolutely terrifying. Then the lifeguard started talking to me and asked about what my daughter was wearing. I couldn’t believe that was happening to me because I always made sure that I paid attention to my kids especially when we were out in a public place. As I was answering her questions, I kept screaming my daughter’s name while looking around for her. I was hoping that she’d hear me and find her way back to me. Then the couple who were hanging out in the beach near us told me they saw my daughter and pointed to my left.
I turned around and there she was. My daughter was held by a lady; finally, I can breathe! The lady asked me if she’s my daughter. I said yes, and thanked her multiple times. With everything happening so quickly, I couldn’t think properly. I didn’t get her name, and I wasn’t even able to ask her where she found my daughter. I hugged my daughter as tight as I could and gave her tons of kisses. We went back to the tent and told her not to do that again while tears were starting to form in my eyes.
Later on, my husband told me that she told my daughter to go back to our tent after he washed her hands. He turned around for a few seconds and saw that she was gone. And that was when he came back to our tent looking for my daughter.
We both know it was a huge mistake on his part for thinking that a 3-year-old would find her way back to me alone. But to be fair with him, earlier today, while they were playing in the water and I was in our tent watching them, she would go back and forth between me and him. So I guess he got confident that she’ll be able to do it alone. However, later that afternoon, a couple of ladies hung out in front of us, blocking my daughter’s view of our tent from the shore. And that was why she kept walking because she couldn’t see me.
On our way home, my daughter was her usual self, always driving me crazy and testing her boundaries. But for the first time in 3 years, I felt beyond blessed having my patience tested because that meant I still have her with me.
Tonight, as I put her to bed after we got home, I started thinking she could have easily ended up in someone else’s home and not in ours. And I could be laying in my bed all alone without her, crying myself to sleep. I cringed with just the thought of it.
This day could have ended differently. But we are so blessed that we found my daughter. I owe my life to the lady who gave me my daughter back. Even though I didn’t get her name, I am forever grateful to her. I hope she gets to read this in the future. And I am beyond thankful to God for giving me my daughter back unharmed.
This post wasn’t written to blame anyone. I just wanted to share our story in the hopes that it would serve as a reminder to all parents that bad things could happen to our precious little ones in just a blink of an eye. Let’s all be present with our kids and always keep an eye on them especially when we’re out in public.
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What did you think of this post? I truly hope you haven’t experienced this. If you did, I am absolutely sorry and I hope you were able to find your precious little one. Let me know your thoughts about this. You know I always love to hear from you.