We Judge Without Knowing
We have a tendency to judge sometimes without even noticing it. I say “we” because I have done it too. I dislike judging people and never do it intentionally. Here’s what I recently learned.
Birthday Party Celebration
I had an invitation to Ann’s birthday party. Among the visitors was Ann’s 6-year-old cousin, Becky. Becky is autistic. I don’t know what type of Autism she has. She speaks and is quite hyper. Her mom, Catherine, monitored her daughter at all times. Believe me, she did not sit down to chat with anyone but spent her time looking after her daughter.
Party Gone Wrong
When Catherine was ready to leave, she gathered Becky’s belongings and said her goodbyes, and so did Becky. Within seconds, someone opened the door and Becky sprung out. Catherine was right behind her. But, as Catherine approached her vehicle, which she had opened remotely, she did not see Becky.
The Search Begins
Catherine began calling Becky in and around her vehicle. But there was no sign of her. She shouted Becky’s name to no avail. Catherine returned to the house and asked if, by any chance, Becky had come back into the house. No one saw her come back inside, but we searched the house, anyway. We couldn’t waste time, so we placed a call to the police. Meanwhile, all the party-goers sprung into action, searching for Becky. Most walked, a few others gathered their vehicles and circled the neighborhood. Even the neighbors joined in on the search once they realized that a 6-year-old autistic child was missing.
She Outran Everyone
Some people spotted her, but Becky outran anybody that came close to her or call her name. She would not stop. A neighbor told us that at one point she blocked Becky’s path with her car. The neighbor placed her car in park and got out to get to Becky. But Becky ran between two houses and evaded the woman. She could see Becky eyeing alternative routes. The police were on their way and once they arrived, they released their K-9 to track Becky. There were calls from witnesses eyeing a little girl with Becky’s description running past the strip mall on the main avenue. Becky ran out of the subdivision, crossed two main roads, passed restaurants and stores on the strip mall. She was quick to evade all those searching for her. The police released a drone to help with the search.
The Search Is Over
Meanwhile at the house was Catherine. Even though desperate and worried about her daughter, she calmly answered the deputy’s questions. A few minutes into the interrogation, the deputy received a call. They had located Becky, but they needed Catherine’s help. Becky was 2.3 miles away from the house at a vacant lot where a new subdivision was going up. According to the deputy’s account, there were eight of them surrounding Becky trying to coerce her to come to them with her favorite toy. She paced from side to side as if searching for a large enough gap between the deputies to run through. Becky kept them on edge while they desperately tried to close in on her. The deputies knew Becky would not allow them to get any closer.
The Mother-Daughter Reunion
Catherine rode in a patrol car. For Catherine, they could not get there fast enough. They sped through red lights and intersections hoping to make it before Becky found a loophole to escape. Catherine was in shock and doubted that the child was her Becky. She thought, “Becky could not possibly have run this far,” but still had a glimmer of hope. Once they arrived, Catherine cried with joy when she saw her beautiful child. The deputy opened the patrol car’s door and Catherine ran out before collapsing on her knees.
She called out to her daughter, “BECKY, COME HERE TO MAMA!”
Becky ran to Catherine, and they embraced in the most beautiful and loving mother-daughter hug.
How Did Becky Do It?
It was such a relief to see Catherine walk in with Becky. Other than a few scrapes, she was fine. But, we still ask ourselves, how did this little girl appear 2.3 miles away from the house? We don’t know. Thankfully she was safe. Yes, Becky is an autistic child and a very smart one too. The way she outran the woman who blocked her path and rerouted her way through. The way she crossed two busy avenues and ended up at a vacant lot where there was a new subdivision going up. And, to keep eight officers on edge trying to figure out where to cut through, takes a lot of analyzing from a 6-year-old.
What Does This Story Have to do With Judging?
I have read about similar cases and the first words out of our mouths are, “Where were the parents?” "Why were her parent's not watching her?" And so on. That’s the problem! We immediately judge the parents without knowing. In Becky’s case, I know for a fact that Catherine was there with her daughter. She walked out right behind her daughter. In a blink of an eye, Becky had dashed away from her mother’s sight and disappeared. My point is we should agree not to judge others. We don't know what is going on in their life.
Originally published at https://debbiesreflection.com/ on March 16, 2019.