real life

"I want my son home..."

It’s time to hold your loved ones close.

This morning a calculated terrorist plot sent shock waves through our serenity.

Two gunmen sent Sydney into lock down taking hostages in the Lindt Café in Sydney’s Martin Place. They flew a Jihadi flag and images which made us tremble were broadcast of hostages staring from the windows.

As a journalist I followed it closely for Mamamia, but as a mother I stopped, stunned.

My thoughts and fears, along with the rest of Australia are focused upon the hostages held captive by this shocking situation.

But my heart is with my family.

As we wait, as the situation develops, I have only one thought in my mind.

I want my children at home.

I want my children safe.

I want them with me.

My seven-year-old son is on his year one Christmas picnic at an inner Sydney beach. I bought him a bag of salt and vinegar chips as a treat to share with the other six and seven-year old boys and girls.  I packed him a hat and a bottle of water. I waved him goodbye as he was too embarrassed to kiss his Mum in front of the other boys.

I wish I had held him longer. I wish I had made him kiss me farewell. I wish I had kept him home.

I know my fear, my apprehension, my barely held terror is giving the terrorists, whether it be a lone wolf operator or a targeted attack exactly what they want.

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I know that my son is safe, that the teachers who are with him are more preoccupied with making sure the children don’t spill their juice or go near the surf.

I know that the furthest thing from my mind should be the fact that this horror will impact upon my seven-year-old son.

But I am a mother and I can’t help it. I want him home.

I want to drive to my other two children’s pre-school and clutch their hands and pack up their bags and mutter to their teachers that they needed to go early. I want to drive to the beach and take my boy home and lock the doors.

I know I am not alone.

News reports are coming in of parents with children in inner city day care centres flocking to take their children home.

Friends have sent me messages saying they are going to pick their kids up early as they want them nearby.

I gave in to my terror only a few moments ago and rang a friend I know was accompanying the children on the excursion. I asked her to find my little boy amongst the 100 children on the beach and call me and let me know he was okay. I knew I sounded like a fool but I had no choice.

He is my son.

Our thoughts are with the hostages and their families.

Want more? Try these:

“To the mum who I used to be.”

A tragic loss of life, that could have been avoided.

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