I took the chance of asking my granddaughter a question. If answered one way, it would melt my heart, and if another . . . well, I was a big girl and would eventually get over it.

Her family packed up the van and headed home after their last camping trip of the season. You know what a feat that can be! Everyone is soooo ready to get back to real beds and pillows, and soooo dirty its hard to recognize who’s who.

It was a fabulous end to their camping season. Almost too amazing—no rain, no fights, no bruises, no bumps! Nothing short of . . .


No Georgie!

“GEORGIE! Where’s Georgie!”

Georgie had been left behind!

The trip suddenly took on a few more descriptive words when this five-year-old had realized Georgie was still camping.

Now, you know what that could mean to a five-year-old who hasn’t missed a night with Georgie in decades! And my guess is, you don’t only know what that means, you hear what that means. And if you knew this little girl’s lungs, everyone along Highway 93 needed to turn up their music or take to their earplugs.

In time, and being the brave little warrior she’s becoming, this dear little princess mustered up all her logical sense and courage and said,

“Well (sniff, sniff) I do have (sniff, sniff, sniff) other stuffed animals (sniff, sniff, sob, wail).”

Then the heavens parted.

“We’ll go back,” Daddy said. (She’s got the same big brown eyes as his—just sayin’.)

What a Daddy.

Back to the question . . .

“If you ever left me behind, would you come back for me?”

That’s a reasonable question from a grammy, don’t you think? Sort of one of those rhetorical questions you really don’t need to ask, ’cause you already know the answer. You just want to hear it.

She smiles and pauses (for way too long).


Maybe? Maybe!

I look at her and start crying some big pretend tears.

The harder I cry, the louder she laughs.

But before I dry my pretend-cry eyes, she consoles me . . .

“But Daddy would.”

I snap out of my tears, let out a big sigh of relief, then circle my arms around her and tell her she had better come back for me, otherwise I may never, ever see her ever again, and that would be a million, billion, trillion times worse than never seeing Georgie again.

I keep her tight till she wiggles free.

“It’s still maybe, Grammy.”

I’ll get over it.

I know you’ll never leave your little one behind, but just in case a “Georgie” they love doesn’t make it home, here are a few good reads to help dry the tears.

Can you believe this classic is over 50 years old!
We never leave behind those we love.
A brand new release just in time for a
different kind of Halloween story.
We all need a little help getting home sometimes.

On another note . . .

I hope you’re able to keep the future before you, believing that someday we will be leaving these unprecedented days behind, where they belong.

6 thoughts on “LEFT BEHIND

      1. Pam Ansingh says:

        Oh Karen! Such a precious story. I feel right there when you write…thanks for bringing me along!



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