It seemed like such a good idea at the time, taking my daughter to the toy store to let her pick something out. I just wasn't aware of the horrors I was about to face. Sometimes you can set out with the best intentions and find yourself trapped in the alternate universe of a 4 year old mind.
I'm not sure if I am being a good Dad or maybe I am just being lazy. My thought was that she would know what she wants better than anyone else. I had completely underestimate the obsessiveness of this mini-me when it comes to picking out the perfect gift for her favorite person...herself. We went through every isle very thoroughly over and over again. This gift had to be spectacular and magnificent. No ordinary present would do.
Toys become evil to adults that are held hostage by the hypnotizing effects they impose on our children. Oh this was no longer my daughter, this was the Queen of the toy store and we were on a mission to find her a new court jester.
I'm working on my sales skills with every toy I pick up, "Oh look at this one". Oh I swear I touched every toy from monster trucks to pink princess dress-up sets. At this point I am convinced that the toys are causing a sensory overload on us both.
Finally, she accepts a doll as her chosen new apprentice and my life can return to normal. After spending hours searching for the perfect toy I now find myself looking at another hour of waiting in line before I can reach the golden gates under the exit sign and free myself of this twilight zone. In the time it took to go from 35th to 2nd in line, I swear I grew a beard. My feet are sore, my back hurts and I can almost taste sweet freedom.
She had held that new doll so tightly to her chest the entire time that she really had not even taken a good look at it. Realizing this, she pulls the baby down and rests it on her lap. Personally, I think the dolls with the eyes that close when you lay them down are pretty cool. However, my daughter took this to be a sign that the baby was possessed by Satan himself. She lets out a horrendously loud scream and hurls the demon spawn into the air. Realizing that the laws of physics still apply to the exorcist doll, she scrambles to get out of the way as it plummets back to earth.
Now any parent knows that when a child screams with enough force, there is a moment of silence as the lungs reach empty and prepare to refill for another blast. It was at this very moment that I notice the entire store had come to a complete halt and all eyes were on us. They stood there with jaws dropped, gazing at the fear frozen child and the demon doll hovering above.
With cat like reflexes, I jump up to save my child from the descending icon of sin only to land into a face full of hot screaming. The timing could not have been better. And now I am faced with a long line behind me, no one in front of me and a captivated audience of very curious shoppers and employees. I now have precious seconds to diffuse this situation and convince my little girl that this is merely a toy and not the anti-christ from Mattel.
As tempting as it was I did not pretend that the doll was biting my jugular as I held it. Instead, I assured her that the baby was very cool because it closed it's eyes to go night night. Of course I had to do this at a safe distance as she was convinced that the baby would start turning it's head completely around while vomiting on her. She did accept the new toy despite the demonic activity that it showed. At least until the first time she took a bath with it and water gushed from its eye sockets.