For me, there is nothing more stressful than finishing a chapter of a Choose Your Own Adventure novel.
Two-Face has Robin dangling over a vat of acid. You only have time to save Boy Wonder or catch the crook.
a) Throw your batarang to slice through Robin’s ropes, or
b) Tackle Two-Face and deliver him to Commissioner Gordon.
Uh…can’t I do both? Why isn’t that an option? Won’t Robin be smart enough to save himself while I catch the bad guy? Why does Gotham City have so many vats of acid? What do they use it for? Is there ever a winning scenario in these stories?
The thing about Choose Your Own Adventure books is that you can easily fix your wrong decisions by flipping back a few pages. Robin fell into the acid because he couldn’t get his grappling hook out of his utility belt fast enough? That’s okay, skip a few pages to read decision b instead. Sure Two-Face escapes but at least you still have your trusty sidekick.
Being an IncrediDad is a lot like living out one of these stories every day, only the decisions are permanent. If I choose to let Boy Wonder eat that cookie, there’s no way to flip back to my decision making moment when he won’t go down for his nap later on.
Recently, IncrediMom, Boy Wonder and I arrived at the end of a chapter in our own Choose Your Own Adventure Story. It felt like another classic “no-win scenario”. Remember in this real life scenario there are no resets or flip-back’s if we make a mistake.
You’ve had a career with the same company for the better part of a decade. They pay your bills, insure you, and the benefits are beyond compare. On the other hand, your closest family is eight-hours away. The area you live in isn’t the ideal place to raise a kid.
a) stay where you are; unhappy but secure, or
b) move across the country to be near family but start over completely
Sometimes, in order to win, you have to take a risk. That’s what being a superhero is all about. Batman would never have to choose between saving Robin or stopping Two-Face. He would figure out how to do both, even if the odds were against him. Parenting is a lot like that. We want to provide for Boy Wonder as best we can but we also know it won’t be easy to start over somewhere else. Still, IncrediMom and I are taking the risk.
We chose b. No take backs, no redo’s. See you soon East Coast!