It’s hard to imagine what it is like to be kidnapped. I’ve tried, often, probably every day for the last four years. Imaging the unlimited scenarios, anything from the kidnapper’s first contact to the actual abduction and the subsequent transport, has plagued me for many sleepless nights. It is hard not to focus on the betrayal he must have felt trusting that stranger. The absolute fear and possible pain he felt while maybe getting dragged away into some van or truck. Thinking of how they may have subdued him if he started to fightback. Sadly, the only thing that brings me some measure of comfort is imagining him poking an eye out or busting the son of a bitch’s testicle with a hard kick. I wish that’s where my imagination ends when I dwell on my son’s kidnapping. But it is not. That rabbit hole is deep and filled with things that take days off my life by just the thought of it. Truth is, neither myself nor my now ex-husband know what really happened.
At times I believe I am literally in Hell on Earth. My world has been upside down since my son went missing from my yard. Thinking towards the future is impossible for me now. So my days are cramped up in my home, reliving every detail of the day he went missing. Most disturbing,however, is that the most mundane of things torture the worst; veering through the kitchen window into the backyard I haven’t visited in four years and seeing the sun-drained, abandoned swing set and slide; hearing the theme song for the kid shows he routinely watched; seeing the back of a head on a child, who slightly resembles mine if he were four years older, at the grocery story or park or everywhere. The worst however is the sound of the phone ringing. Every time it sounds, my body gets filled with the most conflicting emotions. Is this the call I find out he is alive or dead? Or worst, that it is neither. Truth be told, a knock on the door is equally as jarring.
Never more so than today as it turned out. When I opened the door, a large man in uniform greeted me with tender eyes and said, “Ma’am, we received a call today. Apparently one of your neighbors allowed their cat to get out of the house.” The two sentences couldn’t have been more crushing, another dagger of lost hope, but this one cut especially deep due to the tease of his blue uniform. As the disappointment drenched me from head to soul, the gentlemen continued to ask me for a favor, “Over the years the ground under the houses in this neighborhood tend to sink quite a bit. Silly cats love nesting down there. Would you mind if we go into your backyard and retrieve the cat from under your house?”
“Ma’am…are you okay?” He obviously knew I wasn’t.
As the blood rushed from my head to my broken heart, I meekly mumbled, “Why didn’t I know that?”