We've been going to the pool once a week this summer. Z2 absolutely loves water and has a ball every time. It took Z1 a little time to warm up to the water (swimming classes at the YMCA were a complete and utter bust) but now he loves the pool. He immerses himself in the water with unabated enthusiasm.
Yesterday we were at the pool and after about 2 1/2 hours, we were ready to go. I wanted to go visit my sister in her new first apartment down in the city and it was threatening to rain. So I was focused on getting Z2 diapered and dressed quickly. When I turned around, Z1 was gone. I mean, it felt like I looked away for 5 seconds. My friends who were with me didn't see him leave either. I looked this way and that. No sign of him. I walked over to the pool where he usually plays. Not there. Looked at the wading pool. Nope. Maybe he had to use the bathroom? I ran to the ladies' room hollering his name. Not there. Men's room, perhaps? Not there. I started seeing images in my head of someone walking off with my baby. Started seeing images of him floating face down in the water. My heart just stopped
My friend notifies the park rangers and just as I'm about to lose it, here comes Z1 trotting over like it.is.all.good. I asked him where he was and he says so nonchalantly that he was "in the water". No clue what I've been going through. He must have been close to the three feet side because he was not at the 1 foot end. I hold him and talk sternly about how he must tell me when he's going somewhere and stay away from the deep end. Really, all I wanted to do was throttle him. But he's so young and I can tell he can't really grasp the enormity of what he just did.
I was shaken but so relieved to find him. And happy also that he wasn't really lost. I remember being lost as a child and the sheer terror of it.