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Darien, CT, 06820


Thumbs up stand up paddle board and land yoga classes, trainings and retreats by Danielle Brown. 



Danielle Brown

I lost my daughter at the Discovery Museum last weekend. In the dead of winter, when the skis were just about worn down for the season and the overstayed snow looked more like charred foam, I took my two kids to the Discovery Museum in Bridgeport, CT. I imagined running those little legs tired and discovering together. My apprehensive son was quickly turned with the shootout basketball room. The science element of evaluating the effect of the shape of a backboard was lost on the opportunity to perpetually play hoops. INdoors. The indoor ropes course was just the right amount of challenging but accessible. The littles plodded around a dozen or two times. We all delighted in creating our own paper airplanes and rockets and shooting them into targets in the planes room. After a full circle of the museum, we decided to revisit our two favorite rooms just one more time before departing. So back on that obstacle course, Walker was trying to break his timed record and Gigi was lingering at the midpoint, swinging back and forth on the swing. She asked if she could visit the next room. It was right next door. I had been at the Discovery Museum for hours now and I had seen many kids walking around alone. There was a birthday party the hour before and all the kids were roaming the museum unattended. I didn't think we would be apart for more than a few minutes. I figured she would come back if she needed me. I have a thing about choosing independence. We had been there for hours and she knew her way to that room and from that room. So when I gathered walker from the would be wreckage if he didn't beat his time on his personal inner time trial, and we walked next door... Where was she? My eyes lasered over every square foot of that room. Gigi was gone. White, hot panic grew and radiated as my heart beat transferred to my inner ears. With every golden headed girl I saw, hope rose from the rubble inside only to crumble the inner landscape once more. Walker and I each took a floor and ran. I was screaming her name, soft and meek at first but then ferociously. Moms and dads avoided my eyes and reached for the sleeve of their own precious children. The Pleasantville woman at the front desk matter-of-factly replied, "I didn't see anyone walk out the main door". Her name is, Gigi. Please. Will you page her. (Please god.) Gigi Brown. Her dad picked her nick name. Her middle name is the same as mine and her great-grandmother. She has a more independent spirit than both her dad and I combined, then multiplied. And in that fury for my mistake, in the searing fear of loss, in that almost resolve of potential permanent unsettlement, I felt seemingly ease. It is going to be alright. I didn't rationalize this thought. How could I? My attention gelled into a brush stroke of right now and before there was another moment to think ahead, there my little girl, skipping up the stairs.