Left Behind – A Rapture Scare Incited by Toddler’s Hide-And-Seek Game


Toddling crumbsnatchers love games. Especially “Hide and Seek.” Especially with their parents. And it seems to be exceedingly fun for the tiny tots when Mom and Dad have no clue they are joining in the game.

It was 1991 and I thought The Rapture had occurred leaving me behind eight years before I expected. My entire generation knew the world would end at 11:59 p.m. on December 31st, 1999 just like Prince predicted. We just weren’t clear whether it would Eastern or Central Standard Time.

1999 (song)

Party like it’s 1999 (song) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Eldest was barely old enough to toddle around our tiny two-bedroom house. One afternoon, things went a little too quiet. Oh geez, what is he getting into? I looked for him, but he was nowhere to be found in the barely 800 square-foot home. I swear.

I started in back in his room which contained nothing more than an armoire and a baby-bed standing one foot off the ground. He wasn’t there. I glanced at his two windows, and both were closed.

His room opened into the dining room. It held a four-legged dining table and a hope chest. There were no barefoot feet under the table. And the hope chest was locked.

To my right was the kitchen. The back door hadn’t been touched, otherwise I’d have heard. When someone opened the door, it sounded like the hinges on the gates of hell. At least what I suspected they sounded like.

I checked every cabinet and inside the oven. Oh sweet Jesus, where is this child? 

I began to wonder how I’d explain to Officer D.A.R. that I’d lost his son.

“Hey honey,how was your day?”


“I’ve got some chicken and rice in the oven for dinner.”

“Sounds good.”

“By the way, I lost The Eldest today.”

“Good lord woman. How’d you manage that?”

That’s when I thought maybe The Rapture had occurred.

Rapture sign -- Holding up well after 14 years...

It wasn’t 1992 yet, but close enough to scare! (Photo credit: marcn)

I did a quick spiritual inventory and began to sweat. Growing up in a staunch southern Baptist household, I recounted my sins. I didn’t record those two extra Weight Watchers points for the M&M’s I’d stolen from The Eldest’s snack. And look at me, I’m a thief! I just took the Lord’s name in vain when I thought “Oh sweet Jesus, where is this child?” Oh sweet Jesus, I just did it again. And again. Stop it. ‘Cause thinking is just as bad as doing.’ That’s what Mrs. Priss always said in Sunday School. 

I checked the linen closet. Under the sheets. In pillowcases. My thoughts continued to count my transgressions.

Damn it, where is that child? Oh great, now I’m cursing. If Jesus is planning on coming back to get me, I better watch my mouth. Please forgive me for everything I’ve forgotten to ask forgiveness for.

“Son! You better stop hiding and come out. I know you hear me calling you!”

I know I’m behind on my daily Bible reading, but can’t You cut me a little slack? You can see I have a toddler. And yesterday, I skipped “Days of Our Lives” to read him the Sampson story for the millionth time.

Oops, do You consider exaggerations to be lies? I didn’t know. Forgive me. 

By this time, I’d checked the bathroom and our teeny-tiny living room.

“If you are in my bedroom, I’m going to kill you!”

Oh sweet Jesus, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean that. And this time I meant “Oh sweet Jesus” as a term of endearment. 

I scoured the bedroom with no luck. I walked back into the living room and plopped on the couch. With elbows on my knees, I placed my face in my palms and began to bargain in prayer.

Lord, if this is The Rapture, please come back and get me. I don’t want to spend the next seven years of Tribulation with my mother-in-law. Cause I know You didn’t take her. And Lord, if I’ve just lost my child, can You please help me find him? I promise I won’t kill him, but I’m not so sure Officer D.A.R. won’t kill me if I don’t find his child before he gets home. You’d kind of be preventing a homicide, right? And I know You believe in free will and all, but just this once can’t You give the Methodist’s a nod with a little pre-destination that I will find him? 

Suddenly, I heard a snicker from the back bedroom.

Never mind, Jesus. I found him. But hey, we’re all caught up if The Rapture does come soon, right?


“Y” is for: Y Weren’t U @ Skool – 10 Pre-Written Excuses for Teenaged Tardiness/Absence

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I’m a night owl, except for the nights when I go to bed with the sun.  I’m an early riser, except for the days when I snooze until the McDonald’s menu changes from breakfast to lunch. Basically, I’m saying I’m inconsistent.

And because of that, I don’t get up to see the crumbsnatchers off to school.  Knowing that teenagers will take advantage of opportunities afforded by lazy parents, I think ahead.  At the start of each semester, I prepare notes the crumbsnatchers can choose from if they decide they don’t want to take responsibility to get their drowsy derrieres to school on time.

I realize school is almost out for summer, but here’s a sampling:

1)      Please excuse ____________________ tardiness.  His/Her sheets were so dirty we had to de-flea this morning.  Yes, the sheets.  Not the student, but feel free to check him/her upon arrival.

2)      Please excuse ____________________ tardiness.  He/She was dreaming about unicorns pooping rainbows and butterflies.  I read a lot of Dr. Seuss to him/her before bedtime.

3)      Please excuse ____________________ tardiness.  He/She ate an entire box of Brown Sugar and Cinnamon Pop Tarts before bed and sat up all night tweeting things like “#Poptarts #sugar #high”

4)      Please excuse ____________________ tardiness.  He/She was feeling ill and wanted to stay home but I don’t want their germs so I dragged him/her from under the covers, loaded him/her up with cold meds and sent them on their way.  Three hours ago.

5)      Please excuse ____________________ tardiness.  He/She claimed it was Saturday but I never flipped my calendar and I still say it’s Friday.  If it actually is Saturday, then please disregard the necessity for a tardy excuse and heap praise on him/her for Monday’s early arrival.

My method also works to hold absences to a bare minimum.

1)      Please excuse ____________________ absence yesterday.  He/She had explosive diarrhea that ran us completely out of the house.  Have you ever smelled a town with a paper mill and a skunk preserve?  Kind of like that, only worse.

2)      Please excuse ____________________ absence yesterday.  After a thorough interrogation and lie detector test by local FBI, he/she was cleared of all suspicion of being a Russian spy.

3)      Please excuse ____________________ absence yesterday.  He/She ate my last Klondike bar and was hiding in his/her closet all day.

4)      Please excuse ____________________ absence yesterday.  He/She had a cereal hangover after eating an entire box of Frosted Flakes doused with chocolate milk.

5)      Please excuse ____________________ absence yesterday.  He/She died from embarrassment about something stupid that happened the previous school day, then had an out-of-body experience where he/she saw all the people that wanted to follow them on Instagram!  It brought him/her back to life.  It’s a miracle!

Which one is your favorite excuse, and what pre-written excuse would you write?  I need to stockpile for the “Senioritis” attacks we expect from Wolfy and Sweet Pea when they return to school in August.