When I was a little girl, growing up in California, we lived in a housing cooperative. And when I got angry, I would pack my little red wagon with a blanket, my clothes, and my favorite stuffed animals, walk down past the row of townhouses, until I reached the tiny front lawn, where I would set up camp, and never look back, until either the streetlights came on or my mom called me for dinner.
That is how life is, because sooner then later, someone or something brings you back to where you belong, and eventually you have to face what it is you’re running away from and deal with it.
Just shy of my fifth birthday, my mother led me into the Kindergarten classroom at the local grade school for the first day of school. Being away from my mother and my two younger sisters for the first time scared me, and it did not help I was unsure of myself and very shy. After my mom left, I paced the room like a caged animal—the fight or flight mode had kicked in. Then the opportunity presented itself when someone opened the classroom door and I bolted out the entrance, dashing past the main building of the schoolhouse, and ran and ran until I came to an intersection, then stopped to catch my breath. There I sat down on the curb of the sidewalk, because I was not allowed to cross the street by myself and this is where my mother found me a few minutes later. She calmly walked me back to the Kindergarten room. The teacher told me if I wanted to be a baby, I could go home. Well! Nonetheless, that was all it took for me to stay. My sisters were babies—I certainly was not! I stayed, faced my fears, made friends, and had a successful year in Kindergarten—no longer feeling the need to run away.