I used to love scaring my parents. I still do sometimes, but not in the same way I used to. My surprise ear piercings (not particularly shocking) have been received quite differently than my childhood shenanigans.
When I say scare, I'm not talking about a cute kind of scare--like throwing a sheet over my head and hiding behind a corner to jump out and momentarily frighten them.
No, my parents weren't that lucky. It wasn't an uncommon occurrence for 3-year old me to look over my shoulder, grin at my mom or dad, and proceed to run towards the road as fast as my little legs could take me. In the words of my mom, "you would run towards anything as long as it was away from us. It was a fun game". My parents always caught up to me before I could put myself in any serious sort of danger. Unfortunately, I have only vague recollections of this occurring, but one particular instance of "parent scare" stands out quite clearly.
We were shopping for a new TV as a family of four, like happy little families do, and a curious idea graced my mind. I coudn't get it so I just had to follow through. I was left without a choice because the idea was such a good one.
Ok, I'm gonna hide in the shelving here and see how long it takes them to notice that I am not gone.
At first nobody noticed, as I slipped behind the boxes that were twice my size with ease and discreetly vanished from their sight. Take heart, my parents are excellent caretakers and you can rest assured that sheer panic ensued. I watched innocently as my dad noticed my absence and began yelling for me. Pretty soon, my entire family had disappeared as they went searching for me and I was delighted that I had caused such excitement.
I observed their terror and chuckled from behind the massive box, hearing them shouting my name as they dispersed from my sight. It was thrilling, as my young mind couldn't imagine why losing a child would be anything other than a silly game.
It occurred to me after I had waited probably a little too long that I should shock them all with my appearance and yell "surprise!"
This is going to be good! I thought.
"Hi! I'm here!" I yelled as I emerged from around a corner, grinning with satisfaction at the success of my prank. For some reason the joke was not taken so lightly and my parents hugged me in relief and then proceeded to tell me to "don't ever do that again", because "we thought you were gone!", and I think my mom even cried.
After being reunited, I was informed (not for the first time) of the danger in running away from my parents in strange places. I'm glad they found me after my short-lived runaway experience, and I haven't pulled any more disappearing tricks since the fateful day in the TV store.