Anyone who read my Roadhouse post about parenting should understand a few things about me. One, I found it entirely possible to extrapolate advice for parents from a movie in which one guy rips the throat out of another guy with his bare hands, two, I may have more time on my hands than is good for me, and three, if Hollywood has taught us anything it is that there is no need to purchase expensive books by celebrities or “experts” about parenting when you could just pop in a DVD or scroll through your cable for sound advice.
Case in point, Ghostbusters. If you haven’t the 1984 movie starring Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, Dan Aykroyd, and Sigourney Weaver…I’m not sure we can be friends. I first saw Ghostbusters at the Majestic Theater in Mt Penn, PA when it first premiered in theaters. Since that first time at the Majestic, I have seen the movie somewhere north of 3000 times. I have seen it so many times, as a kid, I was able to recite the entire movie (even the swear words). I have met and befriended people online because of this movie.
With such pedigree behind it, it should come as no surprise, as I was trying to come up with a post offering advice to new parents, I would think of Ghostbusters. The 7 quotes I chose just break the surface of wisdom lining the celluloid of this movie. I could have picked from countless others but thought it best to stop otherwise I would have just posted the entire movie for you all to watch and been done with it.
So with this restraint in mind, I was able to put together what I believe is timeless advice for the new parents out there. No stuffy medical terms. No celebrity trying to pass off valuable advice (they most likely learned from their nannies). Just advice new parents may find useful as quoted to them by the best, the beautiful, the only…Ghostbusters*.
So without further ado, may I present:
7 Quotes from Ghostbusters for New Parents
“ Ray, when someone asks if you’re a god, you say YES!” – Let’s face it, your kids are going to believe the world revolves around them if you let them. Your job as a new parent should be to instill in your kids the idea that there is no one smarter, stronger, or more powerful on the planet (or in a spiritual plane) than you are. Remember, these are the same people who just realized the person staring back at them in a mirror is them, it should not be too difficult to fabricate your deification. If not, prepare yourself to be hit with the baby equivalent of an Eldritch blast from Gozer the Gozarian (which would most likely show up in the form of whining, crying, temper tantrums, and in rare and unfortunate cases, flinging of poop).
“Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together…mass hysteria!” – Being a new parent, it should come as no surprise that things in your house are going to change. The hope chest your grandmother gave you that had been in your living room will be replaced by a container of baby wipes (that no one in your house will ever close properly). The ottoman will be moved to make room for the changing table, or crib, or basket of toys, or diaper genie. And all of this has happened even before you bring home the tiny person who won’t be sleeping through the night for the first 6 months of their life. Your house will be turned upside down, your nerves frayed, your patience tried. It’s best to prepare your home and your life as if you were preparing for fire and brimstone coming down from the skies. For real wrath of God type stuff.
“You know, it just occurred to me that we really haven’t had a successful test of this equipment” – I am fairly certain the scientists and engineers who collaborated on the Hadron Collider would have at least one screw left over from assembling your baby’s crib. Unless you are fluent in 6 different languages (3 of them dead languages), skilled in 4 different engineering disciplines, and have the patience of Anatoly Karpov, there is a good chance you are not going to have the chance to make sure the crib, with directions that are more like schematics, is in working order. Not to mention the plug in bottle warmer, battery operated swing, stroller, Pack ‘n’ Play, or anything else you had to assemble or erect. You’re a parent now, you will barely have time to shower let alone have the time for practical application for anything meant for your baby. Sometimes it is best to cross your fingers and hope.
“Don’t cross the streams” – Believe it or not, your baby is not unlike the positively charged stream of protons that polarizes the negatively charged energy of a ghost as emitted by a hand held wand connected to a particle accelerator. Huh? What you will find out is, by crossing your baby with certain foods, lotions, wipes, detergents, formula, diapers, or clothing bad things will inevitably happen. Rashes, bumps, allergic reactions, trips to the pediatrician, or bowel issues that will make it seem like all life as you know stopped instantaneously and every molecule in their body exploding at the speed of light right in to their diapers.
“I feel like the floor of a taxi cab” – Destroying reincarnated minion demigods and 30 story tall marshmallow men in a proton explosion really is no different than the first few months of having a baby in the house. You have been awake since January (and it’s now going on May).
Around the shoulder area of your shirts you have spit up stains. Your house smells like the diaper genie. You’re irritable, you’re tired, and you have been using half dried baby wipes to bathe before work. Consider yourself lucky if the floor of a taxi cab is all you feel like.
“He slimed me” – In all cultures there are rites of passage for entry in to various stages of life. Just like the Matis Hunting Trials of Brazil, where one part of their trials is dumping poison in to the eyes, it is the rite of passage for all parents to be peed on, pooped on, and vomited on (I’ll take the poison to the eyes). Be prepared for that time when you and your newborn are face to face enjoying his or hers new found ability to smile when without warning, they spew forth breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 3 days ago, right in to your face. Congratulations. You’re a parent now.
“Back off man. I’m a scientist” – Eventually you will either elect to or have to go out in public with your baby. And when you do, that is when your baby will develop a case of 3 hour colic, explosive diarrhea, projectile vomiting, or figure out how to throw things. In any of these cases, some of the viewing public will undoubtedly look down at you, gaze unpleasantly, question your methods, or quite possibly offer their own advice. In those instances, it is vitally important to remember, you are a parent. There are no universal right answers. The only answers you will need are the ones that fit your life and your baby the best. Have confidence, stand tall, and don’t be afraid to tell anyone who doubts your ability to back off.
Being a first time parent can be rough stuff. It can be like running around New York City warding off the masses from class-5 free roaming vapors. The real nasty ones too. You’ll be tried, tested, exhausted, and at the edge of your sanity but when that little person, whom you love more than the world itself, cries, whines, or calls, who they gonna call? They’re gonna call you…so you had better be ready.
*Yes, I know that last line is a quote not from the 1984 movie but its 1989 sequel but since I’m writing this post and not you, I decided to use it.