Now that Emeline is 2 1/2 she is (beyond) chatty, picks up on everything, very interested in little details, adds new sayings, phrases, and facial expressions to her repertoire daily. She sings new songs all the time, she's starting to learn new concepts, routines, and she soaks everything in. Everything.
I've found that with this age comes a whole lot of explaining, too. It's fun, and it's hard. We're really trying our best to explain things to her in a kid-friendly way, without being confusing, but also without sugar coating stuff, either. It's like---a teeter-totter balance. A fine line. Of being very honest, of using words she understands, of making sure the look in her eye stays the way a 2 year old should look. If you know what I mean.
My kid doesn't forget much. It was just a few weeks after she turned two that her Great Poppop (my grandfather) passed away. She came with us multiple times, back and forth to their home, as he was lying in a bed, plagued with a short & aggressive form of cancer. She knew he was 'sick'.
On the way to visit my Grandmother after he had passed away, I remember Emeline saying in her sweet, innocent, sing-songy voice, "I go see Gate Poppop! and Gate Gandmom!" And Declan and I just looked at each other. I gave him the nod, like you've got this. And he gently explained that he was sick, and so he's now in heaven. Great Grandmom lives alone and Great Poppop went to be with Jesus. That's what seemed fitting at the time. She followed that up with, "Oh, Gate Poppop in heaven..." And every time we've visited since she's remembered that its just Great Grandmom there, because Poppop was very sick and went to heaven. She still remembers.
I don't know, though. I just don't know how to handle everything. How to explain it correctly. How to handle strong, life-altering things like the concept of death.
Then there's different scenarios. Funnier, more light-hearted things. The concept of Christmas, for example, is one we've been talking about recently.
She keeps saying, "I went to Christmas! Daddy, I went to CHRISTMAS!!" And I finally realized that she meant that we went to THE MALL, which is (already! for the love!) decorated for Christmas. She kept telling us over and over again about Christmas, and then when we try to explain that it's a holiday, and not a "place", she still asks, "Can Daddy come to Christmas, too?" Bless her heart, girlfriend's confused. To try and differentiate the two, we now refer to the mall as "The Christmas Mall". As if that will help.
We tell her that Christmas is about Jesus' birthday. That he was a gift, that's why we give gifts. That people brought him gifts when he was born. We tell her about the trees and decorations. And every time she see's twinkly lights, a christmas tree (again! the mall! for the love! target, too!), she shouts, "MOMMY IT'S CHRISTMAS! THE SPARKADA-DLES! (sparkly lights)"
She knows about Santa, and that he's that jolly, old fat guy that brings presents, too. She already knows he's an icon of Christmas, it just is what is. But we try to focus on what we want to teach her is the real reason. But in kid terms. We try to explain in the way we think makes sense to her. We do our best.
Another thing that has piqued her interest lately is Communion time at Church. We only take it once a month, and it's nothing too fancy. A small little cup of grape juice and a small cracker. Well, it's a really hard concept to explain to a 2 year old. Really hard. So I hadn't really attempted to yet, even though I know she was dying to understand. Or dying to drink the juice, if I'm being honest.
But one day a few weeks ago as we were driving to Church, Emeline was talking about how she was "So 'cited (excited) for church today!" We asked her why and she replied all peppy & quick with, "So I can eat Jesus' BODY!"
I nearly choked on my gum. Whicka-WHATdidyoujustsayKID?
I gave my husband the look of death as he gave me the little shrug and a I tried to explain communion to her-explanation.
Yea. So. Then it led us down the rabbit trail of how the cracker is a symbol and how it's not actually Jesus' body, but that it's so we can remember. AND WHOA. Enter in a WHOLE!LOT!MORE! complicated stuff.
I mean, she's 2 1/2. We know that. But it's hard. It's almost like a rabbit trail. One question leads to another, which leads to another, which leads to that I'm not sure I'm ready to tell her all this right now thing, but it still leaves questions in their mind. It's hard. It's a hard balance, and we're learning.
It's been an interesting journey so far. And honestly? I think we're doing okay for the most part. But there are times we just laugh and think, Nope, should have waited to talk about THAT.
Parenting is no joke.
So tell me, are you just going with the flow with this kind of stuff with your kids? Serious and non-serious things...? Have any funny stories of things your kids have misinterpreted because their little brains just can't get it fully right now?