No one told me that the age of four is the age of we-will-try-to-talk-you-out-of-going-to-bed-every-single-night.
The latest bedtime avoidance technique is called Three Million Questions.
I have explained away why we do not have chicken on Thanksgiving, why it does not snow in the summer and why I can’t make the snow come RIGHT. NOW. MOMMY.
Once heavy heads sink to pillows and blankets are gratefully tucked, they whisper questions about their sister.
Where is she now?
How did she get there?
How long will she be gone?
How long after that?
I wish I had the answers.
Somehow, I never received my copy of The Perfect Way to Explain Death to Hopeful Four Year-Old Eyes.
Trying to steady my voice I answer as best I can, hoping someone asks me something easy next, like how babies are made.
And in the pause of my reply I remind myself how much I need to teach them about life, to lessen the burden of death.
I want them to know how to leap.
How to run with the sun at your back.
How to jump but not too high.
How to brace yourself so the ground cradles your fall.
How to brush at grass-stained knees, crunch the leaves in your hair
and carry your scars gracefully.
Because they are yours.
Wearing them is part of who you are…
Happy Veterans Day to my husband and all of the men and women who have served our country. You are amazing examples of what it means to persevere.
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