1983
Will You Run Away with Me?
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“Will You Run Away with Me?” Ensign, Jan. 1983, 70

“Will You Run Away with Me?”

Being a single parent is not the easiest thing in the world, especially when you have to keep a home running smoothly as well. Try as I might, I just couldn’t seem to find enough time in any day or week to give each of my children the one-on-one time they needed.

One day when my youngest became peeved at me for some infraction of mine, he pronounced, “I’m running away.” He packed his little bag, complete with two pieces of chicken and his stuffed rabbit, and proceeded to the front door. I looked at him with all the sadness I could muster and said, “Can I run away too?” He looked at me in disbelief and stuttered, “D-d-d-do mommies run away?”

Now when one of my children comes up to me and asks if we can run away, I know something is really bothering him and he needs just the two of us to talk things out.

One day my eleven-year-old daughter was having some difficulty trying to learn the thirteen Articles of Faith, so we ran away to study. Afterward, as we were getting ready for bed, my fourteen-year-old son, now a teacher in the Aaronic Priesthood, came up to me and whispered “Mom, how come you and I don’t ever run away anymore?” I felt like I had just been cut in two. I could tell by his actions and the sound of his voice that he was really upset. He felt left out.

We sat down and talked about it, and I guess we hadn’t run away together for almost two years. He had become a deacon, then deacons’ quorum president, had gotten involved in Boy Scouts, and was now a teacher. I had been afraid to ask, because he might think he was too big to go off with just Mom. He and I had become involved in our separate activities that we had failed to communicate with each other.

We made a commitment that night that no matter how old we became, we would never be too old to “run away” with Mom. Vicki J. Hayslip, Portsmouth, Ohio

Photography by Eldon K. Linschoten