The Case of the Missing Kindergartner

Posted by on Sep 2, 2010 | No Comments

One of the fellow members of my Toastmasters club told a great tale about a kindergartner who was “missing in action” on her first day of school. I asked her to share this story as my first guest blogger.

Judi walked up the street to the same corner at 22nd and Larch Way where her little girl had been whisked away just that morning for her first day of kindergarten. She chatted with the other moms as their kids bounded off the bus, one by one, chattering excitedly about their very first day of school.  But anxiety furrowed her brow as the stop sign slowly folded back into the side of the bus and it began to pull away, without disgorging her own daughter. Then panic set in.  Where is Denise? 

Do you remember your child’s first day of school?  The first day of school comes with a mixture of conflicting emotions and questions for most homes.  Will my child make good friends?  Can I count on the school to consider my child’s safety and well being?  Is this truly a safe place to launch my child into a world where I have limited control? This “letting go” thing is tricky!

As Judi turned to head back home to call the school, a glance up Larch Way revealed a curly headed little brunette bouncing confidently along the side of the road, singing as she approached.  It was me, her missing kindergartner.  “It was taking too long to get on the bus,” I said, “so I just decided to walk home.” 

My mom laughs when she tells the story today, but I can only imagine her anxiety at that moment.  The thought of any five year old walking home from school, unattended, along a major arterial with wooded areas on both sides of the route sends panic coursing through my veins.   Too many times this kind of a story does not have a happy ending.  Thank God, over and over again, for the protection that He provides, even when we are clueless to the reality that we are in real danger.  

Whether you are a parent sending your kindergartener off to the first day of school, a high school parent who is navigating the tricky paths of independence versus control, or the parent of an adult child who is trying to find their own path, we can choose to place ourselves and our children in the everlasting arms of our Eternal God.  While this does not absolve our responsibilities as parents, it is a relief to know that someone bigger and more powerful than me is also watching over my children, no matter how old they are.  Hopefully soon, you’ll look up the road, and see your child, bounding toward you, singing as they approach.

Denise Hance is a wife, mother and Pacific Northwest native who likes to speak at women’s group in the Seattle area.  Reach her at 206-755-2257 or

Our Toastmasters club meets at 6:30 AM every Thursday at the Rainbow Cafe’ (112 East Main Street) in Auburn Washington. Stop by for a great way to start the morning.