A twelve-year-old boy sends his cheetah back to the wild, and in doing so, leaves home and kinda gets lost on the African savanna. So goes Duma, the movie I was watching with my younger son.
He asks me if the boy is lost.
Yes, I answer.
He instantly bursts into tears so heart-wrenching that he has to hide his head in his favourite blanket. Storm clouds erupt showers down his cheeks and he climbs onto my lap.
From that moment on, the movie is sad and scary to him. He cries more than once, each time snuggling deeper and deeper into my arms - a second security blanket.
At one point in the movie, we see Mom searching for her son. Run out and find her, my son screams out. Then cries again when the two don't connect.
This is too sad, I want to go to bed, he says.
I tell him he has to stay up to see the happy ending. And he does. And it is.
I love being a Mom. I love being so important to my boys that the thought of being lost without me is scarier than lions and hyenas and crocodiles and elephants and hippopotamuses and tse tse flies.
But then, I feel the same way about them.