This past weekend was a three-day weekend for us. Not that we could tell. David mostly works from home, so other than him running downstairs around 7:30AM each day I have no way of knowing if it’s Tuesday or Saturday. You know…because I don’t own a calendar.
When it is Saturday, I get to sleep in. David wakes up with the kids and I get to sleep in until 8:15 or so. That’s about two extra hours of sleep. Alone. In my bed. Two glorious hours asleep sprawled out across the bed; arm draped across my face and possibly even some drool hanging out in the corner of my mouth. Like the visual? Good. I knew you would.
Last Saturday when I finally dragged my lazy butt out to the family room take over kid patrol so David could get some schoolwork done, he told me, before he headed downstairs, that Chloe had made him sad this morning. I didn’t get a chance to ask why, but I found out shortly after.
Chloe was over at the train table playing with her dolls when she turned to me and said, “Momma, I don’t want to die when I get older.”
If I wasn’t awake yet, that statement did it. Affecting my wise mommy façade I told her, “Chloe, you’re not going to die until you’re really old. It won’t be until after you get married, have lots of babies and your babies have lots of babies. You’ll probably be a great grandma. And you’re hair will be gray.”
Then she said, “But I will miss you and Dadda when I die.”
Holding back tears now, I explained, “You will be so old when you die that Dadda and I will have already died and gone to heaven. When you get old and die you will see us again there.”
“But Momma, will I be able to move my arms and legs? Will I be able to play? Will I be alive again?”
Leave it to Chloe to ask the important questions. Okay, she’s going to die when she is really old, she will be with Mommy and Daddy in heaven, but will she be able to play?
“When you die your body will be buried in the ground and your spirit will go up to heaven, you’ll be able to hang out with Dadda and me and we will play all you want.” I also said that because she will be so old when she dies that Irelyn and Grayson will be really old too, and we’d all be together again.
Which piqued Irelyn’s interest and she had an important question too, “Momma, when we die, will we be able to eat?”
“Ah,” I said, “Well, you probably won’t need to eat in heaven. But, if you want to, I am sure you can.”
The girls were satisfied with what I had told them and went back to playing. Chloe asked if I wanted to watch one of her stories (she likes to act out stories with dolls and action figures).
“Sure,” I said.
Chloe gathered her toys and set them up. “This is a story about how Robin gets old and dies.”
I watched as Batman and Robin fought bad guys and leaped over Smurfs to reach Pinkie Pie (from My Little Pony) to rescue her.
Then, at the end, Robin said to Batman, “I don’t want to die.”
“Everyone dies when they get old Robin,” replied Batman.
And then Robin fell.