A couple of days ago, Max and I had caught the ending of The Wizard of Oz on television. The characters caught his eye and so we started to watch the rest of the movie, one that had been a much anticipated part of my own childhood. Following that, another movie called Spirited Away came on. It was touted as having a similar plot, whereas the main character finds herself in another world with magical beings. They also said it was the first anime movie to ever win an Academy Award. So we started to watch it.
Then the phone rang.
Blabbing away, I quit paying attention to what was on the television. Bad mistake. Suddenly, Max runs over to me in tears, wimpering, 'speaking in tongues' and the only words I can pick out are "mommy," "daddy" and "scared." I had no idea what had scared him. By that time, the main character was sitting waterside and not much was going on. I picked him up and tried to comfort him with some milk and a snuggle in bed. For the rest of the evening he was clearly bothered.
After he fell asleep, I went back and rewound the cartoon (gotta love tivo) to just before the scene where he became noticabley upset. Well, it was awful. The mommy and daddy had been turned into hideous looking pigs, stuffing their faces at a resaraunt where they were being whipped by some black ghostlike beings. The little girl who had returned to where she left her mommy and daddy, screamed when they turned around and she saw what they had been turned into. Then those black, ghostly figures started chasing her.
Poor, poor Max. I felt awful. In such a short time I had failed to protect him from some really scary stuff. The kind of stuff that nightmares are made of. What struck me most was the look of fear on his face. I had never seen this look on him before.
The next day he seemed fine. It never came up. Then, this morning, upon waking, Max says, "mommy, daddy, pig." He was whining a bit. Did he have a nightmare? Was it simply on his mind again? Is he going to be scarred now? Ugh!!!! I told him that mommy's and daddy's NEVER turn into pigs and it was all just pretend. I don't know if he understood any of that, but it's all I can do for damage control. That, and make sure I don't let him watch anything I'm not giving my full attention to.