People Do Not Last Forever

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The American Heritage High School Dictionary’s definition for fear is stated as, “A feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by present or imminent danger.” I fully agree with this statement because that’s what I felt on Sunday, August 24, 2008. I will never forget it because it was the scariest moment of my entire life. The reason was because my mother was missing.

Many people are probably wondering what I am babbling about. The reason behind my anxiety was quite simple. My name is Amber Brianna Kathlene Gardner, and I am thirteen. My mother, Melanie Evett Crooms, has been having seizures since she was fourteen. She takes medication, but from time to time something may go wrong with her prescription. Shaking and staring, she will have a seizure when it is least expected. That is never a positive situation. I know that everything looks okay at the moment, but there are dark storm clouds on the horizon. Now earlier that day we attended Sunday service at our home church, Christ Church Ministries. Ma had stepped into the prayer line and everything seemed normal, until she started behaving very oddly. She would not answer me and was staring off into space. I thought that she was still in the spirit, and I paid it no mind. After service was over I went with one of my friends to the James River nursing home. We went, enjoyed ourselves, and got a bite to eat. I felt fine and full until I walked in the house, called out Ma’s name over five times, and checked every single room, but I did not receive an answer. She was not there!

When I realized this my whole entire body went numb. Crying and panicking, I felt like someone was slowing suffocating me, but I realized that I should not panic so soon. Engrossed in fear and concern, I went and searched my whole neighborhood. After I had looked in and around every place I could imagine, I decided to call a fellow church member for advice. When Sis. Turner answered the phone; she asked me what the matter was. After I told her she kept repeating to me, “Your mom is a grown woman. She can take care of herself.”, and I tried to believe that, but deep down in the pit of my stomach I knew something was wrong. Once I walked home I received the shocking evidence to my greatest fear. In the center of the floor, abandoned by my mother, were her purse, house keys, and wallet. After discovering this I decided to sit down and pray hoping that maybe she just forgot by accident. I even tried to distract myself by watching a movie, but my mind was still full of confusion and concern. I cried with agony and despair for more then a hour. I finally decided to call Sis. Carter, my mom’s best friend, and I begged for her help. She said that she would be there in ten minutes. In those ten minutes I was downstairs telling Sis. Carter about everything that had happened. After all of that she made a suggestion that I had been battling ever since I arrived home. She said, “We should call 911.”

A minute later, I was describing my mom’s race, age, outfit, even the color of her dress to the police. After this I was told that the police officer would be coming by my apartment. Less then five minutes later the police called to tell me that someone who fit my mother’s exact description was located in a room at Riverside Hospital. Sprinting and panting, I ran upstairs to grab her medication, ID, and work ID for the doctor. Then it was off to Riverside to review what had happened

In about twenty minutes we were at the front desk of Riverside asking for Melanie Crooms. They asked who we were, gave us passes, and opened the door for us. Once we reached the room we saw my vulnerable-looking mother lying in the bed. We spoke to the police officers and the assistants and they informed us that she had a seizure in a Chinese restaurant. In the end we called my grandmother to inform her of what was happening. About thirty minutes to a hour later my grandmother, Sis. Carter, and I were trying to sort this entire thing out. Talking and thinking, we tried to piece things together, but eventually we did figure it out. Come to find out it was several key things: low potassium, weak medication, and a potential stress attack> All I could do was pray for my mother’s healing and believe.

God must have heard my prayers because three days later, smiling and laughing, my mother was at home looking beautiful and healthy. You may ask if I learned anything from this and I did. I learned that you should cherish the people in your life because people do not last forever.





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