Stranger Danger

Once upon a time……

My middle child, Drew, has never been one that truly enjoys swimming. Granted she’ll get in the water and find herself having fun once she’s in-now at age 12 but until around 6-7 years old even getting her to the water was difficult. She’d scream and climb up my body, pinching and grabbing until she sat on my shoulders. People stared. It was awkward. She also would spit and cough and wipe her face a hundred times on whatever was handy as soon as she surfaced. I still have no clue why no one called social services. Clearly we were trying to drown her and no one would help save her life. She’ll have so much to tell her therapist.

One year at the beach she was about four years old and we were on vacation in our favorite spot, oneof the barrier islands of South Carolina. We were beachfront in a tiny little house that we will never, ever rent again and we were in a crowded area of the beach for this island. Normally that wouldn’t be an issue but this year we were there on a holiday weekend and we were located next to a busy access point. We had vacationed there for years and this was the most crowded we’d seen it and that is still true after we’ve been time and time again since then. Once again, we’ll never rent that house another time.

One dusky evening while we were leaving the beach and Drew and her brother didn’t want to leave the shore. We were slowly making our way back to our house and these two women carrying drinks were slowly walking down the shoreline toward the kids. Lennon obeyed and came running through the sand to us and Drew was lagging behind. She was wearing a huge floatation device and standing out of the water spitting and coughing salt water up. We stopped to wait for her and the two women walked closer and closer to her. They were closer to her than we were. About the time Drew’s head popped up to look around the women were within about two feet of her. I was wearing a blue t shirt and one of the women was too. Drew was about waist high in height and didn’t even look up to see who this woman was. She just grabbed the ladies shirt front and wiped her little face on it and blew her nose directly onto the complete stranger.

The women stood there in shock. We stood there in shock. Drew looked up at this lady and screamed as thought the lady were in fact, an axe wielding murderer and she ran as fast as a four year old can in loose sand to the comfort of her family.

Her family, who were all laughing so hard they couldn’t breathe.


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