Today, I took my three younger children to the running trail, without my husband. I pushed the stroller and ran next to my 5-year old daughter, who was riding on her bicycle. I had my ipod with me, but decided I didn't need it; she was staying close enough that we could talk and she kept me quite entertained. Here is a snippet of our dialogue after we began:
5-year old: "Why do I have to be in preschool two times, when [her older brother] only had to be in once?"
Me: "He did actually go to preschool for two years, just like you are doing."
5-year old: "No he didn't."
Me: "Yes, he did."
5-year old: "No, he didn't."
Me (note: this is very hard to talk this much as I, (not my husband), am struggling to push the stroller with 54 lbs. combined weight inside of it): "Yes, he did. He went to the same preschool for two years, and you have gone to preschool for two years, but to two different preschools."
5-year old: "No, he didn't... I know."
Me: "Why don't you believe me?"
5-year old: "Because I know."
Me: "You don't know."
5-year old: "No, you don't know."
Me: "Yes, I do."
5-year old: "No, you don't."
Me (by now, a bit excited, and breathing harder as I try to keep up with her and continue talking): "Yes, I do. I don't lie or play tricks, remember? - you know me. He did go to preschool for two years, just like you."
5-year old (as she picks up speed, she calls this to me, over her shoulder): "You're wrong! I have a better mind than you! I know it!"
Me: (panting - and trying to think of how to refute that probably-true-statement)
5-year old (she yells this as she pedals even faster and gets further away): "I am more good at remembering than you! I know he didn't!"
Me: (more panting, my lungs refuse to attempt to yell a response to her as she is now quite far away, and I have to keep pushing and running. She had won, and she knew it.)
I can vividly remember (when I was small) thinking that my own mother was clueless, and I unequivocally know now that my own 5-year old daughter thinks that I am clueless. Life is an interesting thing. We learn so much from children. It is painful, (sometimes more than others, physically, mentally, and/or emotionally), but so exciting and joyful to experience.