The Elk Nightmare

One of the things we did in Jackson was to go to the Elk Refuge. This is a popular thing to do (apparently, with kids) over there in the Winter. We wanted to do something fun for Dylan and since he loves animals we, of course, thought it would be the most fun things to do! Well, things always don’t go as planned right?

Anyway, at the Elk Refuge you get to see tons of Elks gathered on the snow. They take groups of 14 people or so on sleighs and the little trip outdoors last about an hour. The sleigh is open and besides everyone being dressed for the cold, they provide very warm blankets for everyone to enjoy the ride. So we decided to go… Dylan doesn’t mind the cold that much, but that day was windy and it was just a nightmare!

Once we got to the sleigh and the thing started going very slowly, Dylan started to crying and screaming like crazy. Poor kid! My husband and I tried everything we could to calm him down, but he was so, but so frustrated that anything we would try would make him even more upset. I held my baby tight and cried with him… what else I could do? It was our mistake for taking him there and we couldn’t just get up and leave, we were in the middle nowhere around a bunch of wild animals.

Dylan screamed for 50 minutes and passed out on the last 10 minutes. Nobody on the sleigh said (or heard the guide through the little trip) a thing. Some people, with their eyes, were saying “I’m sorry” and other people were judging… and it’s OK, I didn’t care what anyone thought and I just wanted that to be over so my baby could be comfortable.

When the thing was over (I didn’t see any Elk, of course) everyone had to hop on a bus to take us to our car. When we got to the parking lot I told my husband to go ahead and warm up the car and I’d wait everyone to leave the bus so I could go ahead.  As I was sitting and holding sleeping Dylan, one of the woman who was at the sleigh and the bus with us walked by and said “your kid was terrified. I have a kid of the same age and would never do what you did with my kid.” And then she just walked away, all pretty and the perfect mom she must be!

I, on the other hand, started crying  all over again. I was so upset and angry at this woman. I was upset because I was feeling the worst mom ever! And I angry because that woman tried to be mean and tried to say how shitty mom I must be, a mom who didn’t care about my son. Empathy, people! Where is the empathy? Who is the parent that never made a decision thinking about your kid and got a totally different reaction from the kid? Please, tell me who are those parents and I want to meet and maybe learn something from them???

That woman clearly thinks she is this super perfect mom, but at the end of the day I can only feel sorry for her! My anger is gone, my regret of taking my son is gone as well. We made that decision because we thought it was the best and it turned out it wasn’t… we all survived, we didn’t see Elks and we don’t care, we are all healthy and happy, Dylan forgot about it, and we will have a good laugh about this story when he grows up! And, only these three photos to prove we went… Haha. Xx

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