Friday, June 26, 2009


This is a post I've been sitting on for a while, one that I never quite finished, one that I wasn't sure I wanted to post. After this week with all the celebrity death I thought I would tie this up and just go ahead and put it out there.

It's always said that it comes in 3's and unless you've been living under a rock this week you know that Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett and of course Michael Jackson have all passed away. I think a lot of people would say that they feel they have lost a piece of their childhood, and in the case of Farrah, maybe even a little piece of their sexual development. As for MJ, they didn't call him Wacko Jacko for nothing, but you can't deny that he was THE 80's. The moonwalking, MTV ruling, King of Pop. Love him or hate him he was a major strand of our pop culture DNA. Not unlike Elvis or James Brown.

Bringing this around to the original thought for this post was how to explain death to a child. The Munchkin has been weirdly obsessed with death lately. From having to explain to her about Agent B, my sisters cat, and random bugs it's made us really question how to explain something when you aren't sure what you yourself believe.

For those believing in Heaven, in this way I envy you. It's easy. When you die, you go to Heaven. In our world right now when you die, you go in the ground, or if you're a cat, under a rock in the back yard. I can't tell you how many times I have thought about giving in to that belief just because it's a much nicer thought, it's wrapped up in a little bow and it sounds way more pleasant than dying and being covered with dirt.

As parents, Husband and I feel the need to really think through these heavy discussions and decide what to say, knowing that whatever we come up with will most likely have a part in what she believes when she grows up. I want to guide her, but I don't want to instill in her a belief system I'm not even sure I buy. Even if I did buy it, I would want to leave room for her to kow that there are other options, that not everyone believes the way we do. It's a fine line that we walk, because not instilling anything also has repercussions.

What she understands right now is that sometimes people (and animals and bugs) get sick, (sometimes Mommy steps on the bugs and sprays them with poison) and sometimes the Doctors can't help them so they die. Husband thought last night that he would explain to her about Michael Jackson. When I walked in from the grocery store I was greeted with a child telling me that her heart didn't stop, she didn't die, but one day she would die and look like this..... then threw herself on the floor in a chalk line pose, complete with eyes closed and tongue hanging out of her mouth.

I know the time is coming when we are going to have to answer more serious,in depth questions, but for now I guess we just let her guide the discussion and only give her what she asks for. In the meantime maybe Husband and I will get ourselves squared away and have some answers. Is it sad that I would rather have the sex talk? At least that one's easy, no sex until she's 35. Right?


Alicia said...

That is a touchy subject. We have had several pets that have gone to Heaven. But like you there will be more in depth questions. I really wish we could keep them innocent forever!

Poodlehead said...

when did you stop believing?

I'm a Mom!..? said...

The last 2 years have held some very big changes in our lives, it's made us question and re-think a lot of things that we were brought up believing.... Still not sure I don't believe, just not sure that I do or in what...

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of a certain REM song.