If you’re putting your child to bed in a rush tonight – stop.
If you’re yelling at them for the 10th time to brush their teeth, to get in their damn pyjamas, to stop tormenting their brother – stop.
If you’re thinking of skipping the bedtime story to get a jump on your emails, or that bottomless basket of washing – stop.
Because if you’re putting your child to bed tonight – you’re outrageously lucky.
If everyone under your roof is healthy and close, you are audaciously, ridiculously lucky.
Stop for a moment and feel it. Hug them.
Breathe in the smell of their hair, feel their weight in your arms. And tell them you love them. Because tonight there’s a family in Perth who will never get to do that again.
Their little boy is gone.
He was so loved that yesterday he stopped an entire suburb in its tracks for a frantic search.
Yesterday morning, the members of the Trott family were following their familiar routines, ticking by to the familiar rhythms of a family home. The only change to an ordinary Tuesday morning the arrival of workmen installing mirrors at the house.
Everything can change in a minute.
Literally, a world can be upended in the time it takes you to hear your fridge door bleep.
“One minute he was there and I spoke to him,” said Lyndall, Sam’s mum, of the moment she realised her little boy was no longer at her heels. A two-year-old, after all, is always under your feet.
“I heard the fridge door beep because he was in the fridge, I said ‘shut the door Sam. 30 seconds later it beeped again and as I turned back around … he wasn’t there. I immediately saw the front door open and I just ran, I ran… In 30 seconds he was not there anymore.”
Little Sam didn’t know how to open doors but one of the mirror-fitters hadn’t thought to close one and so the boy toddled out. It is a split-second action that the workman will replay over and over in his head.
Perth’s Walbrook Mews community came out in such large numbers to try to find Sam, that police had to turn volunteers away. Strangers left food and water out on their steps overnight, in case a hungry little boy wandered past, hungry, thirsty and lost.
This morning, this heartbreaking plea to all homes in the area from WA Police:
‘Reminder to all, before you leave to work or leave your drive-ways to please check under, around and inside vehicles just in case Sam has crawled under or inside any of those places overnight.’
But in the end it was all too late.
Sam’s tiny body was found in a lake just two streets away from his home around 10am this morning. He had been missing less than 24 hours.
24 hours that changed so many lives.
Absolutely everything can change in a day.
So tonight, hug your kids and think of Sam. Send love and strength to a shattered family. Recognise how lucky you are if your loved ones are in your arms.
We’re standing with you, Lyndal and Matthew, and remembering your beautiful boy.
Leave a message of support for Sam Trott’s family, below.
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