Helllooo? Is anybody dead in there?!

So today I’m sitting at a traffic light when the woman next to me starts smoking a Virginia Slims cigarette. Two things go through my head

A. Do people still smoke?

B. I thought there was a requisite that people who smoke Virginia Slims have to have their ears double-pierced and live in the 80’s

And then I see the woman glaring at me. “What did you say?” she asks. Shit, did I say all that stuff out loud? Lately I’ve had this really bad habit of thinking out loud. Although I’m shocked she could hear me over the Barbara Streisand music she was blaring. Insert more mocking comments here. When the light changes to green 24 awkward seconds later, I speed off in my super fast Honda Odyssey.

The truth is I feel kind of bad for saying these things out loud, but I blame it all on one person— my daughter. Lately all she does is think out loud. Do your kids do this? Like the other day my husband and I were discussing what President Morsi said to President Obama about the state of Libya (It’s more likely we were talking about the gay slur Paris Hilton made, but I really can’t remember exactly) when from the back of the car I hear my daughter say to herself, “One day I’m going to be a princess.”

I know I shouldn’t interrupt the conversation she’s having with herself, but apparently I’m having a stupid moment. In the nicest way possible I tell her that’s not likely because princess is not a profession. Annnnd… cue the crying. What was I thinking? Can’t be a princess?! She’s totally losing it, so I do what any good mother would do. I shove a cookie in her mouth and change my answer as quickly as possible. You can be a princess if you want to be, honey. I mean, who am I to rain on her royal procession? Besides, there’s a good chance Prince Harry will still be single by the time she’s 18, and I’m pretty sure he’ll be into younger women. Although there’s a small part of me that’s hoping he likes cougars.

But back to the subject at hand— thinking out loud. So yesterday we’re driving down the street listening to Heigh Ho for the 5,000th time when out of nowhere my daughter whispers what’s going through her head. “You’ll soon die.” The fact that she says it in her sweet, little girl voice makes it all the more creepy. What if she has ESP? I don’t believe in that kind of shit, but immediately I take my foot off the accelerator and start driving more carefully just in case. As if that’s not scary enough, she starts to whisper that we’re all going to die today. “Me and Mommy and Daddy and Holden.” Aggggh, she’s like that redrum kid!

After driving home at 5 mph, checking every smoke detector in our house, and triple checking the carbon monoxide detector, I get in bed for the night with my husband. Every time he falls asleep I poke him to make sure he’s still alive, until he gets tired of it and opens up his nightstand drawer to show me the divorce papers if I don’t stop. Eventually I must fall asleep because I wake up at 11:42 pm. Still alive. Phew.

My husband is snoring which usually drives me insane but tonight this means he’s still alive. Holden is more fidgety than someone going through withdrawal, which is also relieving. But when I look at Zoey on the monitor she is completely still. I stare at the screen for two whole minutes but there is zero movement. I start to panic. She’s just sleeping, right? Is she dead? “Move damn it, move,” I telepathically command her. I don’t know why I think she would listen to me telepathically since she never does when I speak out loud. Wait, her arm is up on the pillow now. Was it like that a minute ago? I’m not sure. Maybe she moved. No, I think it was up like that before. I stare at the monitor until my eyes hurt. Nothing.

Okay, I have two choices. Close my eyes and go back to sleep. Ummm, yeah right. Or go into her room and get really really close to her chest to see if it’s going up and down. I think we all know what I’m going to do. I creep down the hallway and open Zoey’s door as quietly as possible. As I’m leaning over her bed just four inches from her chest, she stirs and wakes up. And the next thing she does is start screaming. Of course. And then Holden hears her and he starts screaming too. And Greg jumps out of bed and comes running in a panic. The house is in utter chaos.

And that makes me really happy because it’s 12:01am and everyone’s awake which means all four of us are alive and we all made it through yesterday. Except maybe the cat. Who I love to death but let’s face it, if I didn’t have to clean the litter box anymore, would that be so bad? Oh great, I must have said that out loud because now he’s glaring at me. Don’t you dare throw up in my shoe again.


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