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Missing: That Could’ve Been Me

Walking to school when I was 11 y.o. was a daily anxiety ridden experience.  I would leave the house after my mother had left for work,  I walked about 6 big city long blocks but this was not a bustling city area, it was a suburb and the last street I traveled was a long straight and empty road that ran alongside the base of a freeway.   Homes did not face the street, it was devoid of activity other than my lonely footsteps and an occassional passing car, very seldom did I see a vehicle drive this route.

As I ventured out alone each school day morning, I felt afraid.  I would think,  “If someone kidnapped me, know one would know or find out for a very long time.  Mom is at work so she wouldn’t know I was missing until later tonight when she got home and I wasn’t there.  By that time, I could be dead or anywhere.”  This was many years ago when schools kept less track of kids not showing up for school.  I had been thrust into the role of a latch-key kid.  Plucked from a two parent home where I was “taken care of” and pretty much buffered from the big bad world.   At that age 10 -11, I did not watch the news or read newspapers so I was not fully aware of the all dangers that were out there.

As I made my lunch for school in the morning, I would feel sad, alone and resentful.   Mom, now a single parent, had to work and I was now on my own for most things including getting myself off to school.  Dad was a bad man.  We moved to a new state.  This was a good thing that we were out on our own.  Right?

Suddenly unprotected I dealt with the world all by myself and didn’t feel equipped or prepared but, I had no choice in the matter.  As I traveled my lonely route,  I would imagine someone driving up and trying to grab me, I needed a plan!  To my left was the freeway with a long stretching very high chain link fence as a barrier.  Across the street were several perpendicular streets that ended or emptied out onto the road I was on, they were flanked by homes that seemed so far away.  My plan,  I would run down one of those streets, looking for life inside one of those homes and run to the one that might help save my life.  But what if I couldn’t find a house with lights on or people visible, what if everyone was gone all on their way to work?  What then?  How far and how long could I run?  Would the people that tried to grab me be following as I ran, to thwart my escape?

Today in the news ( as has unfortunately happened to many times before ),  they found a 10 y.o. little girl’s body not far from her home.  She had gone missing days before, while walking to school.  It makes me cry for her, that could have been me.

Leave a comment


  1. Jaen Wirefly

     /  October 16, 2012


  2. That is so sad.

  3. Wow, if the area you had to walk in looked anything like that image above, I can easily see why a kid would feel terrified to be alone there everyday. I’m glad to hear that nothing bad ever happened to you there, though.

    • verbalbanter

       /  October 13, 2012

      Thank you 🙂 Me too or I couldn’t be here to write about it.



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