Dinner and MOVIE.
Beach and MOVIE.
Pottery and MOVIE.
Give blood and MOVIE.
Climb Everest and MOVIE.
But I am very particular about the movies I spend two hours of my life on. First and foremost, THE MOVIE HAS TO HAVE A HAPPY ENDING. You go on a date to escape reality, not live the news! There is nothing I hate more than a crummy ending to an otherwise gloriously romantic/exciting/adventurous movie! Repeat, I go to the movies to ESCAPE REALITY.
I used to like horror movies. The suspense, the nervous shrieks, and then embarrassed laughter (after all, it was you shrieking) and then, despite knowing the movie isn't real, leaving the theater with the absolute certainty that YOU ARE NEXT TO DIE. So this is why Horror movies have (despite other obvious reasons) stopped being in my "what should we see" list. As a mother, I have discovered that these movies now hit too close to home. Basically, Parenting IS a horror movie.
Let me build my case.
I will present to you certain key aspects of a horror movie, and then parallel my life as a Parent.
1. Horror Movie
Life appears to be the picture of bliss. Smiling people, beautiful weather, awesome soundtrack, all is perfect.
Two gorgeous parents with the four cutest children ever born. Weather in desert always perfect because there is no weather in the desert. Soundtrack is Serious satellite radio playing the eighties channel.
2. Horror Movie
Something does not seem right. Eery silences. Weird sounds. Weird smells. The plot thickens, as they say. The plot has unexpected, and ominous developments.
Okay, do I really need to elaborate? Every day of my life entails eery silences (someone is up to something) Weird Sounds (Someone is REALLY up to something) Weird Smells (Sigh, I didn't catch the something in time) and the plot thickens. You realize this parenting thing is taking some unexpected developments, and you realize, ominously, that it will never end.
3. Horror Movie
Something HORRIBLE , and TERRIFYING is found in a seemingly harmless location!
Ever hear of a diaper blowout?
Strange Phenomenon begins to happen. Normal humans displaying superhuman abilities that cannot be explained.
My five year old can talk himself out of any situation. I am not kidding. When we get pulled over, we let the cop talk to Kurt, not us. With him in our corner, we've never gotten a ticket.
My two year old can destroy a clean home in 17.8 seconds.
My baby has more drool dripping onto her shirt than 85 Novocain numbed adult males put together.
4. Horror Movie
The evil monster/alien/rapist/mugger/terrorist/serial killer/road enraged driver/IRS agent creeps up to attack the victim while the victim sleeps peacefully, unaware....
Let me paint a picture. 3:00 am. A silent house. (Finally) Maybe a clock ticks somewhere. The heater goes on, and the fridge is humming. Suddenly...
"Joe, did you hear that?"
"I think I heard a-AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
I am the victim. The monster is my toddlers HEAD suddenly EXPLODING out of nowhere into my face! Or, in my husband's case, opening his eyes to a small head already hovering a mere inch from his own.
5. Horror Movie
The stand off begins! Someone eventually retreats, and runs away.
With two toddlers, the noteworthy thing is not the ever present standoff, its me. Running Away. Everyday.
The dark forces are inevitably defeated, and the victim emerges triumphantly the victor, albeit a little battle scarred.
Hey, I am the mom. I always win. And I am very battle scarred.
There you go. My life is in fact, a horror movie, therefore, to escape reality, I will never attend one again. And just in case I have not yet convinced you, here's a few more things that appear in every horror movie, and every parents life.
4. EVERYTHING AROUND YOU CAN KILL
(two words, choking hazard)
and finally, last, but NOT least,
5. The disclaimer that comes built into both horror movies and parenting manuals. That you are NOT safe. As a victim/parent, you will always, for everything, forever, BE NEXT.
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