Haunted house

Add to the list of things they didn’t tell you about parenthood:

Your daughter will take it upon herself to embark on a mission. The objective of this mission is to successfully enter the house so quietly that you don’t even notice until she makes it into the kitchen, where you usually are when they get home, but as stealth is not particularly a strength of hers, every day you hear the doorknob click or the faint sound of footsteps to announce her arrival. However, one day you’ll be standing in the kitchen, price-comparing sneakers for her (she left that morning sporting a pair of yours because all of a sudden her feet had grown a foot), and you’ll look up for no real reason to find her standing four feet away from you, staring at you and grinning madly.

They also didn’t tell you that about thirty minutes later on that same day, you will open the bento-style container in your son’s lunchbox after he’d spent a day at miniature horse camp, and out will fly a fly. It will make a drive for the space directly between your eyes before making a hard left and wheeling off to explore the rest of the house and figure out the best hiding spots in which to hole up as soon as you try to stalk it with a swatter. And later, when your daughter points out that there is a fly in the house and you say, “I know. It flew out of your brother’s lunchbox,” that brother will overhear and begin clapping his hands with what you can only describe as a look of demonic glee on his face before actually pumping his fist triumphantly and exclaiming, “YES! IT WORKED! WE GOT YOU! Arlo, the fly trap worked!” at which point the other brother will leap up and join in the victory dance.

He’s right. They did get you. But the question is: what did YOU ever do to get THEM?

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