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Skating on Thin Ice-literally

The other day at 5pm it was dark and Shaun wasn’t in the house. I ventured out in the cold to look for him. The neighbors said they saw him and Red in the park.

Red is who we call the trouble maker in the neighborhood. He’s not my favorite kid and he knows it.

Anyway I yelled out for Shaun and out he comes running from the wooded area, Red right behind him. Shaun walked with me home while I asked what he was doing back there. “I was at the pond.” Let me tell you all it’s not a pond, it’s an overflow for the high water table in this area. I refer to it as the scum pond. The kids like to throw rocks in it, pretend they are fishing and dumb boy stuff like that.

I asked what he was doing at the pond, he got all shifty and said he and Red were walking on it because it was frozen. My heart sank. I immediately got mad, telling him it wasn’t a smart thing to do, he could’ve fallen in, stop following what Red does….etc. I grounded him for the rest of the week and told him I would think about his attending Ice Hockey lessons this weekend. I over-reacted a bit with the punishment I know but I was so freaked I couldn’t help it. Later that night I started thinking about it again.

What if the ice broke?
What if he couldn’t get out of the water?
What if his stupid ass friend freaked out and ran home instead of getting help?
What if I waited 10 minutes before looking for him?
What if? What if? What if?

Shaun has it pretty loose in this neighborhood. It’s small so there really isn’t anywhere to go so he can be outside for hours and all we have to do is peek outside and we usually can see him. The image of him in the dark, in icy cold water, calling out for help is haunting me. I think a couple hundred more grays sprouted out overnight, the worry lines on my face got deeper and my heart is pounding harder.