You know something is up when the gym teacher complains that your child is doing alien squats while listening to the theme song from Alien Nation on her iPod. There are other telltale signs too. When you turn off the light, your child glows in the dark. Alien space ships hover over the house at night. At the child’s annual physical, the pediatrician records on his chart: cone-shaped head, bulging eyes, and green complexion. “I’m sorry I don’t have a quick fix,” the doctor tells you. “Like teenage, it’s something she’ll eventually outgrow.”
Every time I worry that my daughter starts to look like a chipmunk after playing with her hamsters, the doctor usually tells me to have her avoid peanuts. I’m surprised he doesn’t have any advice this time. Convinced that there must be a way to get my child back, I come up with a plan. I sit on the lawn. “Who’s there? ” I say holding a tin can up to my ear, wearing antenna on my head. I can’t hear anything so I hand the can to my husband. He thinks he hears something that is hard to make out.
“Take me to your leader,”my husband mumbles, “is that what you’re asking”, he says; thinking he’s talking to Martians. “This is for you Debbie,” he says handing me the tin can.
The only thing I hear is MEOW! MEOW! from the neighbor’s cat who then lunges at me and is sticking to my face.
I dial the doctor’s office back and another pediatrician on call does have some advice. He tells me to avoid Swiss cheese, particularly during a full moon. “At least you haven’t gone through the vampire phase yet,” the doctor tells me. “That can be a real pain in the neck.”