Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Daddy's Little Girl

My husband was studying upstairs the other night and our 5-year old daughter walked in.

5-year old: "Dad, why did you chose a job that you have to work all day and all night sometimes?"
Dad: "Well, most dads work a lot, but they still get to see their kids and play like we do, whenever we can."
5-year old: "But, why did you chose a job that you have to work so much?"
Dad: "Well, right now, because I'm younger, I have to work a lot, but when I get older, I won't have to work as much."
5-year old: "But, then we will be older too."
Dad: "That's true."

I was doing the dishes downstairs and she came to find me.

5-year old: "I wish that I was going to be a dad someday, and not a mom."
Me: "Really? Why?"
5-year old: "Because dads get to leave and go to work all day."
Me: "And what do you think moms do all day?"
5-year old: "They have to change yucky diapers and clean up messes."
Me: "Hm. You know, some moms don't stay home all day. Some moms have nannies to take care of their kids and maids to clean their houses, and they go to work."
5-year old: "Do you wish you could go to work?"
Me: "Nope."
5-year old: "Why not?"
Me: "Because I like to be home when you and your brother get off the bus. I would miss that a lot."
5-year old: "Hmm. Well, I still want to go to work all day."

Then, she was gone - in a flash. And I knew that she knew I had a lot more to say. She knew she had touched a sensitive nerve, that she had given me an opportunity for a teaching moment, and that my mind was scrambling for a meaningful, personal, and age-appropriate answer.

But, she was gone.


Barb's blessings said...

Wow. How do they figure that out so early. Great insights Liz, as always.

Rachel said something similar to me when she was about that age. She said, "Being a mom is a lot of work, isn't it mom? I don't want to be a mom because it is too hard." What was profound about it was that she noticed. You think you are almost transparent to them and that they take everything you do for them for granted, but sometimes they notice more than you think.

She will know soon . . .

Love you!


Anonymous said...

I think you handled it exactly right. She'll bring it up again and give you a chance to expand on your feelings about the subject. (She is very cute, by the way!)