The other day, my daughter Emaleigh said that I am a “softy”.
Who knows, maybe she was referring to my physique, but I’m pretty sure that she meant that I am a little bit of a “piece of cake” when it comes to coercing me. Yes, maybe I am guilty. I probably give my kids way too many chances and final warnings. So, maybe I am a “softy”. But, I’ll tell you one thing…I do have limits. And, Elijah (and the pour soul at the pet shop) found that out this weekend.
You see-Elijah has been doing a lot of “research” lately. So, this past weekend he looked up ALOT of information on leopard geckos. He wants one. Bad. So, he spent a lot of time trying to figure out how much money he is going to need to save to be able to get a leopard gecko. And so it begins.
Ok. So, I have a little bit of a….hmmm…what would you call it? Ah, yes-phobia! Although my fear is not leopard geckos, they are pretty close. If any of you know me…you can probably guess where this is going.
I hate snakes!! My kids are well aware of this. I can’t even type the word without lifting my feet up off of the floor. Actually, there has only been one video in my life with a snake that I have been able to watch…
Well, leopard geckos kind of look like snake…with feet! I have never felt one, nor have I felt a snake…but I can imagine that they feel quite similar. Ugh.
Ray and I used to live in a basement apartment. We enjoyed living there and really enjoyed the family that lived above us. One day, there was a knock and Ray opened the door. It was the woman from upstairs holding the biggest, yellow snake that I had ever seen! I swear, it was an anaconda (like the movie!), but they both assured me it wasn’t. Liars! Well, my poor husband had no idea that I had such a deep fear of snakes. All I remember is that she just kept walking towards me saying, “Look, want to touch it?” and I just kept walking backwards. Before I knew it, I was at the corner of our living room…couldn’t walk any further. All I kept thinking was I have never punched anyone…or anything, but I think I might have to punch her! But then the snake is going to drop and attack me. Well, luckily for her, I didn’t have to punch her…I just broke into tears. It was at that moment that Ray caught on, and asked her to go upstairs…and take her 80 foot python with her!
Anyway, back to our weekend. It was just be and the two boys this weekend, so I decided to take them to a few local pet shops to “window shop”. Our first stop was Petsmart. We found the leopard geckos, and I’ll admit they were kind of cute. I’m still not ready to snuggle one, but it was neat to see Elijah’s excitement when he saw his first “real” one! The lady at the checkout recommended that we visit Animal Attractions and Scales and Tales. Immediately I told Elijah we would not be traveling to a shop called Scales and Tales…really? I’m no dummy.
So, we went to Animal Attractions. Awesome. “Look it’s Nemo!” Yes, we traveled to the area where all of the fish were first. Trying to work myself up.
“Excuse me, are you finding everything ok?”
“Actually, can you tell us where the leopard geckos are?”
“Sure! Follow me.” So we did.
Followed him down the dark alley (totally kidding)to the glass cages.
Where he took us, there was glass cages on both sides…so you had to walk right in the middle to get to the leopard geckos, that were right smack dab in the middle of…you guessed it. The snakes.
I literally stopped dead in my tracks.
“Mooooooooommy!!! I want to see the gepos!” Eydan screamed at me.
Yeah, who’s the “softy” now? I was NOT about to go in there. I made Elijah, who was already in awe of the leopard geckos, come over and get Eydan.
“Maam”, said the worker, “the snakes are locked in their cages…you will be fine.”
All I could do was smirk, and let out a “hmph”. Yeah. That’s not very assuring. I’ve seen those movies. How do I know someone isn’t behind me with a sledge hammer about to free all of them? Hmm? The only thing I kept thinking about was that scene from Pee Wee Herman’s Big Adventure where there is a fire in the pet shop. Pee Wee goes in and saves all of the slithery things and there they are crawling all over the sidewalk. Aaaaaah.
I literally think that the guy thought I was crazy because I was pacing back and forth as Eydan and Elijah “Oooooed” and “Aaaaawed” over all of the creatures, with and without legs. “Come on Mommy, please come look.” Elijah begged.
Yeah, there was no coercing me this time. If only Emaleigh could have been a witness to my non-“softness”. They can talk me out of an extra cookie, or having a “sleepover” on our bedroom floor, or sometimes even watching too much television…but they will NEVER be able to talk me into one thing: Looking at, smelling, touching, buying, or even drawing a snake.
Yes, I’m a cold hearted Mommy…just like a…E