The holidays are a magical time for parents — you get to create the magic of Christmas in your living room, haul an actual 7-foot-tall piece of the forest home with you, and watch your kids tear into their presents (thank you Amazon Prime) on Christmas Day. Truly, truly special. That is if you don't leave your kid behind in Evanston, Illinois, while you jet off somewhere exotic with the rest of the family. That is, yes, the plot of the most classic of all family Christmas movies about parental neglect, Home Alone.
So... are you a regular mom, a cool mom, or the Home Alone mom? It can be hard to tell, especially around the holidays when life is hectic and head counts are shoddy. If you find yourself suddenly awakening to shriek “KEVIN!” on a regular basis or sporting ginormous brown coats (#fashion), the answer is already likely apparent.
For the rest of us, here are a few signs that may indicate you’re at risk of becoming Kate McAllister 2.0.
1You don’t believe in back-up alarms.
The entire plot of Home Alone centers on the McAllisters only having electric alarm clocks, which are reset when a tree falls on a power line in the middle of the night and zaps their electricity. All seven members of the McAllister clan sleep late, and thereby find themselves rushing to make their flight. It's easy to blame Kate McAllister, because, well, maybe she *should* be able to remember how many children she has birthed before getting onto her Delta flight and cracking open Departures, but look, busy moms know the pain of sleep deprivation.
The Kate McAllisters among us assume that if the alarm fails to go off, it’s a miracle, not a crisis! Sure, you and your extended family might miss your a.m. activities, such as a flight to Paris, but you get an extra 25 minutes of those precious zzzs.
2You frequently get that nagging feeling you’re forgetting something.
From the time that pregnancy mental fog rolls in until you’re struggling to manage the kids’ carpool schedule, most moms have that nagging feeling there’s something they’re forgetting. “Did I forget to close the garage door? Did I leave the stove on? Did I accidentally leave my minor child on a different continent?”
Argh, we all let something slide occasionally. #Mondays.
3You ruin fabulously romantic vacations by taking (almost) all your kids.
The sex life of Kate and Pete McAllister is, presumably, on a low boil if the brief glimpse we get into their typical morning routine and general sense of frazzled-ness is anything to go by. As such, they're highly relatable and #couplegoals. Finding time together, just the two of you, is hard — even harder when you have seven kids tucked into bunk beds and attic crawl-spaces all over your house.
If you're anything like Kate, you know that it’s so hard to be apart from our little ones. So much so, that you will often sabotage the already fewer-and-far-between-than-they-used-to-be romantic getaways by bringing along the whole fam. Or trying to, then forgetting one of your kids and, say, I don’t know, jetting off to Paris.
4You know when to splurge and when to save.
Raising kids is so expensive, even when you are a fancy "designer" and your husband is a nondescript "businessman," which is why it’s so important to be smart about the right times to splurge (for instance, on a sprawling suburban estate in a neighborhood that’s still maybe less safe than you think?) and when to save (feeding your houseguests Little Nero’s pizza).
We can only assume that the reason the McAllisters chose to fly to Paris on actual Christmas was that the fares took a dive — a win for frugal parents everywhere. Kate McAllister should start a personal finance lifestyle blog for parents. She could call it OOPS.tumblr.com.
5Your parenting mistakes make you feel like a bad mom.
Do you feel like a bad parent like 60% of the time, and possibly up to 91% of the time? Congrats, you’re a parent. We all make mistakes, but all our kids really need from us is love... and to not be left in an empty home to fend off kooky home invaders.
But maybe that’s judgy of me?
6You’ll do anything for your kids (even fly coach on Christmas Eve).
Sure, Kate McAllister didn’t actually get that last seat in coach (weird, after she openly berated a flight attendant and all) but she would have ridden in coach for an entire trans-Atlantic flight. For her children. Even a middle seat, probably. Just like you would.
So as it turns out, we're all a little bit like the Home Alone mom. I mean, in theory. You wouldn’t actually leave your 8-year-old child behind on vacation.
You’re not a monster!
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