Saturday, June 20, 2015

how not why

When you have a child, you're probably prepared to hear "why" a lot. Everyone warns you; it's the stuff of jokes and cartoons--a little kid asking why and following up with "why" again and again until the parent is ready to scream. 

But Derek doesn't ask why, he asks how.

When we told him we were going to Disneyland, he wanted to know how we would get there, which car we would take and who would drive. Bobby told him we were taking daddy's car, but mommy would drive. Derek followed up by asking where Bobby was planning to sit. He wanted to know which road we were going to take to get to Disneyland--a funny question for a kid who doesn't know what a map is, but I tried to answer and describe the long-long drive down I-10 anyway. By the time we finally left, Derek already knew the seating arrangement in the car and he knew that we were going to drive past Charlie's house and past Mommy and Daddy's work and then we would keep driving and driving for longer than he could imagine....

Knowing how doesn't make everything okay all the time, but it makes him feel a little secure. It didn't stop him from asking if we were there yet or from whining halfway through Riverside county that we were driving too much and he just wanted to go home--but when I reminded him that I had already told him we were going to drive too much, that we were going to drive and drive until he couldn't stand it, he said, "oh, yeah" and stopped complaining for a few minutes. And when I told him that he if closed his eyes and slept for a little bit it might feel like we got there faster, he decided to try it.

He's a planner.

I have to go into work for a few hours this morning. Last night, just before he fell asleep, Derek asked how he would get to Daddy's house in the morning. I told him I would drive him. He smiled and said "good." Usually he wants to know more about the route, but that was enough last night.

It's his favorite question.

"How," for him, isn't about "how does it work" so much as a "have you thought of everything?" When Bobby donated Derek's old stroller to Goodwill yesterday, Derek got very upset and demanded to know what his dad was planning to do when Derek got tired. Bobby tried to assure him that I still have my jogging stroller, but he said Derek remained suspicious. I wasn't there, but I think their little conversation/argument ended with Derek reminding Bobby that he gets tired sometimes and Bobby doesn't like to carry him. How was he going to handle that?

It's funny to me. These are things I never worried about as a kid, things I should probably try to think about a little more often as an adult.

But it's time for me to go to work ... how will I get there on time now!? Hahaha

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