Are You Prepared For an Emergency? I Wasn’t.

When the earthquake struck, I didn’t consider it an emergency. I was at work. We all laughed and then carried on with the deposition. No biggie.

Ten minutes later I suddenly felt like my heart was in my throat. I had no idea where Miss L was. But I knew she wasn’t where I left her.

Miss L’s daycare is in a government building that had to evacuate. I had been over the

Credit: MSNBC

emergency procedures several times with the daycare before I signed her up. The children would be escorted out to an unknown location. Daycare staff would alert the parents by cell phone, work phone, and email. In case these methods don’t work, every parent has a card with the emergency daycare number and the center ID number.

So many contingencies. And I managed to thwart them all.

I had left my cell phone at home, which had the emergency number stored in the contacts. So that method of contacting me was going straight to voicemail. To make things worse, I had changed offices two days prior. TWO DAYS. I had a new work number and a new email, but I hadn’t yet told the daycare. But the biggest mistake of all? Losing that card and not replacing it.

When I managed to pull myself together, I called a colleague who also had a child at the daycare and got the information I needed to go get Miss L.

What did I learn from this? Make sure the daycare always has a way to reach you, and for you to reach them. I’m going to make three copies of that card: one for my car, one for my purse, and one for my office. I will update new information immediately; not even the next day.

And I will learn all the ways into and out of the city. Traffic’s a bitch, ya’ll.

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