The other day Jenna and I were driving past a cemetery. She got really excited, in her eyes they were big rocks with flower trophies on top. She wanted to climb them and bring all the flowers home. “Can we PLEASE go there? I really need to go in there, PLEEEEEEASE!!!” Damn it.
I should have just told her not today but that would insinuate that it was acceptable to play in cemeteries. There was never going to be a day we could play there. So instead I told her we couldn’t play in there BECAUSE it’s a cemetery. She asked, “what’s a cemetery? Can we go there and play? I will be good at the cemetery, I promise.” Damn it.
I explained when you get older, things can happen and people pass away. Their body stays here but their spirit goes to Heaven. We bury their body in the ground and we put the big rock on top with their name on it so we have somewhere to go and talk to the person. A lot of people bring them flowers and leave them by the big rocks. It’s not a place to play.
She was content with that explaination and didn’t ask any follow-up questions; which lead me to believe we’d never speak of it again. Hallelujah!
A couple of days pass by and we drive past the same cemetery again but Jaelyn’s with us now. Jenna says, “Jaelyn when mommy gets old and dies, we’re gonna bury her body in there and put a rock on her butt and flowers on her head. It’s ok though because we can talk to her whenever. Mommy I will bring you flowers and talk to you everyday before nap time.” Damn it.
Jaelyn looked horrified. “What’s she talking about mommy? Are you dying? Mommy I’ll miss you when you’re dead.” Daaamn it.
I know that despite Jenna being half Jaelyn’s age she comprehends things better than he does. This may have been a car conversation for Jenna but it shouldn’t have been for Jaelyn. He needs to be sat down where he could ask all his questions and have my undivided attention. I tried so hard to avoid the conversation in the car but he wouldn’t drop it. He was forcing me to answer. Damn it.
There are so many reasons my kids might end up on a shrinks couch that I have to answer these kind of questions vaguely but truthfully. It worked enough to stop the conversation but from the look on Jaelyn’s face, I knew this wasnt the last time we’d discuss death. It was just a matter of time. Damn it.
A week or so passes by and Brandon comes home from work. It’s late and the kids are already in bed. Brandon goes upstairs to take a shower. Jaelyn comes to the top of the stairs and in a loud whisper says, “mommy I’m gonna miss you when you’re dead.” DAMN IT!
First off, I totally spaced telling Brandon about the whole cemetery conversation with Jenna and it had been over a week. Secondly, I never told him about the car conversation with Jaelyn either. Brandon works long, hard hours. When he gets home he’s not just physically tired but he’s mentally tired too. I always give him run downs of that day’s happenings but for some reason it never came up. But it did that night. Damn it.
When he walked into the hallway Jaelyn called him in his room and gave him the sob story on how much he’s gonna miss me. Brandon comes downstairs and says with an exasperated look, “So, Jaelyn’s crying because he’s gonna miss you when you’re dead.” Damn it.
With the look on Brandon’s face combined with the week I had just had all I could do was laugh. This was the first week of the summer and Brandon was working extremely long days. I explained it all to him. His reactions were the same as mine. We both knew that conversation should have never happened like that but it couldn’t be avoided. After Brandon had talked with him that night I thought it was finally over. Hallelujah!
At 3 am the next morning Jaelyn came in our room crying about my death. I was as understanding as I can be at 3 am, “dude, I’m not dying, now get your butt back in bed.” I’m not lucky enough to die anytime soon, DAMN IT!
Why am I the one whose death we have to keep talking about? Can we pick someone elses, ANYONE elses, death? What about Brandon? Yeah let’s talk about him dying. Let’s throw him under the bus damn it! It was 3 am and I had been hearing about my death for weeks now. I was willing to throw anyone under the death bus.
We haven’t had any more death talks and it’s been a couple of months now. I know the war isn’t over but I feel like this battle has been fought and won. With any luck it will never be spoke of again, until I actually do die. Then Brandon can have this talk with them because I’m done talking about my own death. By the way, I’ve already called dibs on dying first…