Many years ago, I took my 3-year-old son to the Montgomery County Fair. We were having a grand time until I lost sight of Ryan for a second. When I turned around to find him, he was lost in a sea of parents, babies and screaming children. As my heart raced, I vainly tried to find Ryan’s face the crowd. What I noticed instead is that when you’re panicking, all toddlers look alike. Luckily for me, he hadn’t wandered off, but just went to throw a pizza crust in a nearby trashcan.

When I bent down to pick Ryan up, I noticed that he was wearing blue shorts and a bright orange T-shirt. In my three seconds of panic, it would have been easier to look for an orange shirt and blue shorts than my son’s face. From that point on, whenever I was out with one of my kids, I always kept a mental image of what they were wearing in case we got separated.