Girl X has been asking a lot of questions about death lately. We had gotten her off the subject for sometime, but it's back.
She will be turning 8 (8! when the hell did that happen??) next week.
Isn't this a little heavy for an 8 year old??? When I was 8 I was thinking about how to get back at my brother for blowing the head off my barbie doll with his bb gun. (Little bastard!) Girl X? She wants to discuss where Heaven is and how did G-d make the world? And why do things have to age? Why do years pass? Why do we get old? Why doesn't G-d want us to stay young? What happens to my body when I die?
And being that sort of parent who wants to do things just the opposite of mine, meaning tell her the truth, I am trying. But it's really hard and I don't want her to dwell on it. I don't want her to get so wrapped up in worrying about what comes next that she forgets about this lifetime because hey. It can be pretty damn great.
I blame Mr X a little bit for this.
He took her to the park one day and to get there, he had to pass a cemetary. She asked what it was. She was maybe 4. All he had to do was say a cemetary. If she asked further, ok, a little explanation. But damn! What he told her? I had nightmares. And she didn't get it. All she got was that there would be no more mom and dad and friends and toys and M&M's? Nope.
Personally, I think there must be M&M's in Heaven because there is no more perfect food that M&M's.
He meant well, he just forgot that she was 4. And easily scared.
So, when they came home and she was crying I had to sit with her and talk about G-d and why it wasn't bad. No, we weren't in a hurry to get there but it was ok.
She accepted this and for the most part, it's ok.
But every now and then she slips one of those questions in on me and it throws me for a loop.
I wish she'd give me more of those goofy questions. Like whether or not fish fart (they do, sort of). Or if cows speak human when we're not around to listen.
When she had her tooth pulled the other week? I said how cool it would be when the tooth fairy came and gave her a surprise. She said she thought fairies weren't real. Then she asked if they were. What could I do? I told her the truth (which, really? getting harder and harder the older she gets). That it's fun to pretend the tooth fairy is real and don't spoil it for the other kids. She wasn't upset. She asked if we could keep pretending too and we did.
Next she's going to ask me if Santa is real. I don't want to answer that yet! Let her have one more year believing in Santa before that childhood magic is gone too! We have always made such a big deal about Christmas. One year we stuck a piece of red cloth in the fire place grate and told her Santa's suit got caught in it. Her eyes were huge! She held that piece of cloth as if it were gold. She whispered 'wow' in total awe. It was amazing and one of my favorite moments. I'll never forget that 'wow'. That wonder.
My girl is getting older and soon, I'm going to have to face it. For today, I'm going to hold her in my lap one more moment. One more moment before she's too big or tells me how uncool that would be.