A little boy went missing in our local area today. I heard the news on Facebook as I walked into Tesco to buy my lovely friend some baby clothes for her impending baby… I shared the post on Millie’s Trust Facebook three times to try and catch a big audience whilst I scanned the news to see if they had found him … In about 15 minutes, my posts had been shared over 5,000 times – how amazing is social media for spreading news like that when people need help?
I didn’t even make it to the baby section when I saw that the little boy was still missing … I bought Leo some water and a snack, put buying the clothes off, walked straight back out of Tesco and headed 5 minutes down the road to where this little 3 year old had gone missing …. I felt sick thinking about the possibility of another mum and dad going through the devastating news of their baby not coming home, I felt like I had to help; so I headed on up there.
Driving around the area for 10 minutes scanning all around whilst police cars flew around and passing people who were clearly searching for this little boy, I clocked one of my friends (Hi Lisa!) running up the street and I knew instantly that she was looking for him too.
Pulling up to speak to her, I was just about to get Leo out of the car to join Lisa when the news came through that this little man had been found safe and sound. The relief across both mine and Lisa’s faces was instant and we didn’t even know this little boy.
I logged back on and updated the Facebook statuses to let people know that he had been found safe and sound and that’s when I noticed that these posts had been shared over 5,000 times combined in such a space of time. I was absolutely gobsmacked and then I started to read some of the comments and what was awe striking was the amount of people that I came across making comments saying they were helping to look or they were heading on up there when they heard the news that he had been found or simply shared the Facebook posts to allow other people in the area to know to be alert and to keep their eyes open. The way that communities pull together at times of need is absolutely fantastic and I find it so inspiring that so many people who don’t know one another can come together and help.
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There’s no judgement to be on anyone regarding this situtaion because no one knows what happened and I wouldn’t listen to any rumours because they probably aren’t true anyway.
What this story has done is show once again how quickly children can leave your sight without your realising and it’s a harsh reminder about ensuring you are watching your children all the time. No excuses.
You all know that I count my blessings with Leo every single second of every single day not only because he is our son but because he is our rainbow after losing our Mills.
So, after a little catch up with Lisa, Leo and I headed back to Tesco to finish what I had set out to do an hour earlier, purchase some cute baby clothes. I had dejavu walking back in there, I think I even parked in the same spot – which was weird when I realised that when we came back out of Tesco later.
Before we left Tesco though, I met someone that told me a story. We got talking about the baby clothes that I was purchasing and she asked if I had any other children other than my little boy in the pram. As I always do, I responded with “yes, I have a daughter who passed away at 9 months old and she should be 4 now” The lady looked at me and before she even said it, I knew. She looked straight at me and said I’ve got a child that died too – a boy who was 15, he died from Meningitis and he donated his organs and was the first heart transplant at Wythenshawe hospital.
Wow. Total respect from me straight there from me to this mum. I’ve noticed a lot nowadays that when I meet someone who has lost a child, those words “I’m sorry” are very rarely said because we don’t need to – there’s like an unspoken language between parents who have lost children. There’s that problem again, no word for me to use to refer to someone who has lost a child because there isn’t one powerful enough to exist or describe the pain that a parent suffers over the loss of a child.
Anyway, I told this lady that we tried to donate Millie’s organs too but we weren’t allowed because she had to have a post mortem done. We went through the whole administrative procedure (which is extremely long and intrusive but I totally understand why it needs to be like this) but we were then informed that we were unable to donate Millie’s organs which was a very sad blow to us; but we tried.
This lady today mentioned that her daughter followed our charity and I hope that she sees this blog so that she can see how much I respect her just through that small conversation that we had today with one another. I did also let her know that we taught all about meningitis to everyone who comes on our 1 or 2 day courses, she seemed pleased to hear this and told me that her daughter campaigns heavily about Meningitis in her brother’s memory.
And for my little dude, as you can see below – today just got all too much for him and he just had to put his head down to rest! 😍
This is just really a big shout out to remember to hold your children tight whenever you can and keep giving them hugs and keep telling them that you love them even when they think that they are too old! They’re never too old 😉.