I'm a Killer Mom.
My husband, baby, and I are spending our First Weekend Away From Home at our friend's country house. Our baby's godfather, to be more accurate. We envision our son growing up spending relaxing weekends here, enjoying more nature than even Central Park can offer. The type of Nature where one hears howls coming from the woods at night, and can be 92% certain that there's no need to call 911.
We spent many weekends here before the baby was born; weekends full of cocktails and frivolity, of saucy jokes, and late bedtimes. While our cocktail intake and bedtime have changed since the baby was born, some things about visiting here remain constant, including sharing gorgeous meals outdoors, under the canopy of huge trees and -last night, anyway- a giant Blue Moon.
As we dined under the stars last night, our friend asked what it feels like being a parent. If we've ever felt love quite like this before.
It's a tough question to answer.
Sure, as parents we are hard-wired to protect and love this baby we made. It's our job. My husband explained the joy we feel when our son recognizes us and smiles, and how protective he feels when the baby falls asleep in his arms, grabbing onto him like a little monkey.
I explained things a little differently.
I feel protective in a more violent way. A more animalistic way. A more primal way. I explained in great detail, and without hesitation, that if anyone threatened the safety of my child, I would reach out with my hand and jam my rock-hard fingers into their throat, grabbing their trachea and esophagus, and ripping them out the front of their neck.
The truly scary thing isn't the graphic nature of the punishment I would inflict, but rather that I came up with it without a moment's thought. I didn't weigh my options, I didn't wonder if kicking the perpetrator in the balls would be just as good. I knew exactly what I would do, and I know without a doubt that I would have the strength and courage to see the violent act through.
Is that scary or admirable? Is it to be discouraged or encouraged? Should Child Protective Services be alerted, or should Parenting magazine profile me for their Awesome Parents Edition?
Apparently, this intense desire to protect comes with parenthood. Our brains change. Our chemistry alters, like Dr. David Banner in The Incredible Hulk. We become Super Humans. Super Parents. Maybe even Super Scary.
I didn't know I had it in me.