Posts tagged death
Posts tagged death
My boys are off kindergarten this week as it is March break. They’re doing a couple of hours of Sport Play camp each morning and loving it. Yesterday when I picked them up from camp, Evan greeted me with a pretty big question:
Are you and Daddy and James and me and Noelle going to die?
Hmm…what have they been teaching my boys at Sport Play camp?! Knowing Evan, he has been considering this question for days. I’m glad he asked, but this was another one of those moments when I kind of wish I was PVRing my life and could just press “pause” while I took a moment to think. My boys have been full of big questions lately. They want to know important things like whether it’s okay for secret agents to lie sometimes, as long as they’re doing it to save good people from bad guys. And they want to know tricky things like how the first dandelion started to grow if there were no other dandelions to spread seeds. And yesterday Evan wanted to know about death.
So, I thought for about two seconds, and then I just spoke openly and matter of factly (I hope). Here’s what I said:
“Well, the way the world works is that all living things one day die. Human beings are living things, so they die, but we’re fortunate because our species lives a long time. A flower might only live one season and a bee might only live a year. But humans can live many, many years. We keep our selves healthy and we plan to live a very long time.”
And then I paused and waited for more questions…
Turns out that was enough for the moment. Putting a positive spin on death (hey, at least we live longer than bees!) seemed to make Evan feel okay about the whole thing, for the time being anyway. We talked a little more about how when living things die they go back to the earth so that more living things may grow (which got a little confusing when James asked if he was dirt before he was a baby in my tummy)…but then both boys seemed more interested in talking about how long tortoises live.
Do your kids ask about death? What do you tell them?