Born to Run
One day, while I was babysitting at a meeting of our local chapter of Women’s Aglow, a girl came up to me and asked if she could use the restroom which was only a few doors away from the nursery. Only minutes before, my only adult helper had left the room to run a short errand. I knew my helper would be back soon, so I let the girl go to the bathroom and watched the hallway from the nursery door.
Suddenly one of the younger children began crying loudly so I left the doorway momentarily to check on the small child. I comforted the small child and quickly returned to the nursery door to watch for the girl to come out of the bathroom. After a few minutes, my helper returned but the little girl did not.
I quickly explained what had happened to my helper. She agreed to watch the main group of children while I went searching for my missing child. As I headed down the hallway toward the bathroom, I heard a couple of women talking, and one of them asked me, “Why is there a little girl running around in the foyer?” Immediately I knew the first place to look for my escapee, so I went to bring her back to the nursery.
As soon as I reached the church foyer my suspicions were confirmed—it was the girl I had let go to the restroom earlier. As I approached her, the girl made a game out of running away from me. However, her game ended abruptly when I cornered her in the foyer and gently grabbed her arm. Then I took her back to the nursery, and we had a serious conversation about her behavior.
So, nursery workers learn from my mistake and don’t trust preschoolers to return on their own if you let them go to the bathroom—even if it’s only a few doors down the hallway. If you do, you may have to go searching for them later because preschoolers are born to run.