Shortly after meeting my husband, he introduced me to A Song of Ice and Fire, knowing how much I loved great fantasy novels. I devoured every book in the series that had been written up until then, and spent years wondering when George R. R. Martin would have the next one finished.
Then the announcement came that HBO was making it into a series. We were so excited, but so very nervous to see whether it would live up to the high bar the books had set. The series premiered the spring I was pregnant with my first child, and excitement turned into glee, as each episode exceeded our expectations.
Now, five seasons and 2 children later, I have begun to draw parallels between Game of Thrones and being a parent. I’m not sure whether Mr. Martin intended for these similarities to be so apparent, but to me, they’re clear as day.
Sex is necessary to advance the plot.
Hell, they invented a term for what GoT does: sexposition. The story moves forward via conversation during a sex scene, in the series. Your story moves forward because of the actual sex. If you don’t know what that means, Google “birds and bees.”
Every time you think you know what’s going on, the rules change.
All those stages your baby goes through give you just enough time to catch your breath, figure things out, and then start scrambling again, as things change for the umpteenth time. Sounds exactly like every season of GoT.
“The night is dark and full of terrors.”
In the beginning, this refers to all those midnight feedings and diaper changes. As your kids grow, though, it begins to refer to the act of actually getting them to bed. “I need to pee again.” “Can I have a bedtime snack?” “I had a bad dream!” “There’s something in the closet that I’m afraid of…” Wanna know what you should be afraid of, kid? The look on my face when you wake me up in the middle of the night for the sixth time!
The “dragons” get bigger every year.
They start out so tiny and cute, and you think to yourself, these things are the best EVER! Everyone should have one. But they are as unpredictable in real life as they are on the show. Plus, the possibility of them becoming assholes grows exponentially, as they themselves grow.
“A very small man can cast a very large shadow.”
I know this refers to Tyrion in the show, but I’m pretty sure it’s also rather prophetic of the role our one year old son has in our family. That boy owns us.
“You know nothing, Jon Snow.”
The ladies know what they want.
Maybe your daughter is like Arya, strong, determined and takes no shit. Or maybe she’s like Margaery, sweet, determined, manipulative and takes no shit. Or maybe she’s more like Cersei, a total asshole who also takes no shit. Note the theme here?
You have theories on how the story will go, but you’re really just guessing at this point.
What happens, as time goes on, is up to one person and one person only: George R.R. Martin. Or your child, depending on what we’re referring to. At a certain point, you’re just going to have to trust that what they’re doing is the right thing.
Edited to add:
Oh. My. God. How could I possibly forget the best quote of them all?!
Translated from high Valyrian, it means “All men must serve.” HAHAHAHAHA. Yes, that just about sums up parenthood, doesn’t it? All parents must serve…their child’s every whim. Anyone who has had a toddler or a threenager knows that it doesn’t get any more accurate than this.