Turning Around

Monday, January 31, 2011

The other day, I was driving down one of the main roads in our town, and something caught my eye. It was an infant carrier, sitting on the grass near the sidewalk. A pink Graco infant car seat carrier perched near some bushes, alone. Shopping center on one side, road on the other. No people.


There did not appear to be a baby inside.

But I only had 1.7 seconds to look at it as I sped by. My thoughts raced. What if there was a baby inside? A teeny tiny baby that I couldn't see from my angle? Why in the world would someone leave a baby carrier sitting there? What if? What if? What if?

My heart started to pound. I reached the red light, and then I made an illegal, but right turn. I went back. My son was with me. "Where we goin' Mama? Why we turning?"

I didn't answer him. I was too busy playing through the upcoming scenario in my mind. If there was a baby inside, I would call the police. I would stand there and hold it and wait for the police. Or should I hold it? What should I do? How long would it take the police to come? Would I go with them? Would they let me? What do they do with abandoned babies? Take them to the hospital? Maybe I should call my pediatrician friend. . . I couldn't think fast enough.

I was there. I parked next to the carrier, and got out of my car. I held my breath as I walked over.

Empty.

5 point harness fastened. Pink material spotless. Completely empty.

What if - I had a horrible thought. I looked in the bushes. Nothing. I stood there and listened. Do I hear a baby crying somewhere? Anywhere?

No. Nothing. It was the strangest thing.

I got back in my car, and sat there for a minute. What in the world? Why would someone leave a baby carrier sitting there like that? It belongs in a car. You can't take a baby in the car without it. Why is it there, and where is the baby? I looked all around, searching for something odd or out of place.

Nothing, except that carrier.

I pulled away. But it all felt so . . . unfinished. Odd. Not right.

As I merged back onto the busy street, I saw a pick up truck park in the spot I had just left. An old man got out, and walked over to the carrier. He stood there for a moment and looked into it. He looked all around, paused, and then he left.

I imagine that he got back into his truck and shook his head in confusion like I did. But seeing him stop made things feel right for me. The situation was no less odd, but I felt reassured. People will stop.

And then it hit me: I can stop. I can change my plans and turn around. I can react. I am not so busy. I am not too distracted. I can turn around. I didn't really know that, until I did.


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12 Comments »

12 Responses to “Turning Around”

  1. That is a wonderful post, and a great thing to remember!

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  2. What a great point. I feel like some days I should write it on a post-it note right in front of me... I am not too distracted. I can stop! such a good reminder!

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  3. Excellent post. Thanks for sharing. I'm curious...have you been back by to see if the carrier is still there? Visiting from Gather Inspirit. Happy Friday! :)

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  4. A great message, especially in this world when people don't stop or are afraid to stop b/c of all the crazy traps we here about. We live in a sad, sad world, but this post is an encouraging reminder that there are plenty of good people left! ;)

    Visiting from Gather Inspirit! Have a great weekend!

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  5. Seams Inspired - Thanks for visiting! When I drove past later that same day, it was gone.

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  6. Great post! What an example for your son, and a wonderful reminder. Have a blessed weekend.

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  7. Beautiful post! Found you through InCourage! Blessings to you!

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  8. Coming by from (in)courage.

    Your post was great and that would have shaken me up as well.

    Amy @ Missional Mama

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  9. Whew! That would be unnerving ... glad you double-checked!

    Visiting from Bloggy Moms Blog Hop :)

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  10. Whew! That would be unnerving ... glad you double-checked!

    Visiting from Bloggy Moms Blog Hop :)

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  11. What a great point. I feel like some days I should write it on a post-it note right in front of me... I am not too distracted. I can stop! such a good reminder!

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