Among the many names and titles Daenerys Targaryen uses to identify herself, the one she is most commonly known as is "Mother of Dragons." It's tremendously badass, and it's also totally fitting, because raising dragons and raising children is the same thing. Not only does it require a great many of the same skill sets—patience, resilience, stern determination, and preternaturally toned quads, either for riding on their backs or constantly squatting down to their level—but dragons and small humans have a lot in common. Like... sort of uncomfortably a lot in common when you really sit back and consider what this says about parenting.
In Game of Thrones, the scions of House Targaryen were the last keepers of dragons in the known world. At one point they had no fewer than 20. (Of course they sort of screwed that up with the Dance of the Dragons, a civil war between two sides of the family that decimated the human and dragon populations of the Targaryens.) But whether or not you belong in House Targaryen and therefore have a special kinship with these majestic beasts (dragons, not children... though I have definitely whispered "majestic beasts" to myself as I watched my children devour entire ice cream sundaes in literally a minute), having children can provide you with insight into the inner workings of dragons, and vice versa.
You Have To Wait FOREVER For Them To Get Here
Moms who carried your kids, show of hands: who felt as though they were pregnant for about 127 years? I sure as hell did. And I willingly concede that waiting 9+ annoying months of pregnancy is nothing compared to waiting for an adoption to go through. No matter how they come to us, children are an exercise in patience and endurance before they're even really ours. Dragons are the same: we had to wait an entire season for those damn eggs to hatch. And they'd been chilling out for over a century, since the last of the of the dragons died about 150 years before the start of Game of Thrones.
Many Of Us Go Through A Ring Of Fire To Bring Them Into This World
Moms who've had a vaginal delivery will recall (vividly) the "ring of fire" (also known as crowning) when the top of the baby's head pops out for good and it feels like someone took a blowtorch to your most delicate of bits. Daenerys tops all of us, though, by walking into her husband's funeral pyre with her dragon eggs, which causes them to hatch. She comes out of the whole ordeal unscathed. We are all weak whiners compared to Dany.
They Start Out Adorable And Tiny, And Before You Know It They're Way Bigger Than You
At least with dragons you can ride on them when they get bigger. Kids just get mouthy and eat you out of house and home as they grow.
Dragons and children DGAF. Seriously, they just roam around, doing what they want, taking what they want, eating what they want. They're like "Oh? This yours? I'm going to stick it in my mouth. Nom nom nom. Go ahead. Try and do something about it."
You're Constantly Apologizing For The Stuff They Destroy
Whether it's to the waitstaff of your favorite restaurant for the fact that your toddler has dropped 90 percent of their dinner on the floor, or to the owner of a shop because your preschooler broke something, or to a local shepherd because your dragon has scorched and devoured their livestock/daughter. It's just an endless parade of feeling embarrassed and guilty.
They Are Not Above Turning On You (If Only Momentarily)
Ultimately, neither a dragon nor your child will inflict irreparable damage, but let us never forget that both are basically wild animals and cannot be trusted not to turn to their baser instincts.
Sometimes Chaining Them Up In A Dungeon Seems Like A Good Idea
But then you're like "No, no. This is cruel. Dragons/children deserve to be free and not locked up."
They Are Loud AF
So. Damn. Loud. And they totally sound alike. When Dany locked up her dragons (which we've established is a bad idea whether you're talking about mythical creatures or humans), I swear to God I heard them screaming "Moooooom!" Also, my children absolutely have the dragon shriek down, and not on purpose.
There's A Sneaky Collection Of People Always Trying To Take Them From You
In Game of Thrones, that's the warlocks (among others) who want the dragons for their own nefarious purposes. In our world? Grandparents.
You Can Use Them To Get Out Of Obligations
Dany used her largest baby, Drogon, to immolate Kraznys mo Nakloz, the slaver who agrees to trade her a dragon for an army of Unsullied. Then Dany's like, "Actually, no, I'm not going to pay you. Instead, imma have my dragon burn you alive and then free the city. #dealwithit #micdrop" I personally haven't used my kids to emancipate anyone, but I have said they were sick to get out of going somewhere. (Don't you judge me: we've all done it.)
They're Picky Eaters
Believe it or not, dragons are pretty particular about what they will and won't eat. Specifically, they require all their meat be cooked first. As they get bigger and learn how to breathe fire, that's not such a big deal, but before then you have to lovingly prepare all their mutton and pork and horse meat yourself. Sort of like how my son requires a peanut butter and jelly sandwich every single afternoon, and heaven help you if the peanut butter to jelly ratio is off or you dare to use the end piece of bread.
Sometimes, You Are The Only One Who Can Control Them
And it sucks because that means you really don't get a break.
They Are A Handful, But You Miss Them When They're Not Around
I feel like every mom has had a "Where are my dragons?!" moment with her children, whether she is longing to pick them up from daycare after a particularly hellacious day, or she misses them during a rare weekend away, or she has momentarily lost sight of them in the mall. We feel you Dany. Where ARE your dragons?
You Desperately Love Them
And no bond you have with any other creature will ever compare to what you have with your babies, whether or not they have scales.