But Why?

21 Sep

I can’t believe this has already started.  I mean I knew it would, just about everyone goes through it, I just thought it would happen a little later in the growing-up years.

Driving home on Abercorn tonight Nia was looking through a toy magazine.  This, of course, is dangerous because she says she wants 85% of the goodies in it.  (She favors the princess/barbie/pretend play toys.)

Her telling me to look back at her as she points out everything she wants wasn’t the milestone that made me throw my head back and let out a groan of exhaustion/amusement – it was this…

“Look momma, Elmo!”
“Uh-huh – he’s so cute huh?”
“You’re not looking momma.”
“Nia, honey, momma’s gotta drive – I can’t look back at you – if I do we might boo-boo the car – ok?”
“Ok.  Momma – he’s in a box.  Why is he in a box?”
“Because that’s how he comes.”
“But why?”
“Um – he has to come that way.”
“Buy why?”
“Ah – (as I’m trying to avoid hitting a car that decided it was going to brake hard before merging into the turning lane without a signal) because it keeps him safe.”
“Can I have him?”
“Remember I told you yesterday that Santa might bring him for you.” (what she doesn’t know is that Aunt Sissy and Uncle Brian Santa already have him at their workshop!)
“Santa will bring him tomorrow?”
“No – not tomorrow – at Christmas.”
“But why?”
“Because we have to wait – this is only September – we still have to have October, November and December.  Then in December is -”
“Well – yes – Santa – but also Christmas.” (You know, I’m trying to teach the REAL meaning and all…)
“But I want him now.”
“We have to wait sweetie.”
“But why?”

Each time she would ask I would shake my head in disbelief and laugh.  Seriously, I thought I had, like, at least, I don’t know, 5 more years until the “but why” phase.  I remember asking my mom when I was like 10 or something.  Now I understandably know why she eventually resorted to those lines parents use – “just because ok!” – “because I said so!” – “for the love of God how many times are you going to ask me? do you want me to pull every hair out of my head and bounce my skull off a wall at the same time?  i mean are you doing research for some project that has a grade of life or death!”  Ok – my parents never said that last one – but I’m pretty sure many felt like that after years of answering why – right?

Please don’t get me wrong – I know how important it is for her to know why – she’s trying to figure all this stuff out and I feel so lucky to be able to help her do it.  I love to watch her mind working as she tries to digest what I just told her. It’s  so precious and innocent. I just hope I’m giving her the right answers!

What's Up Elmo?

I know I just need to have patient and do my best trying to teach her because soon this part of childhood will pass and I’ll be faced with many other tough questions/trying times. And, it’s likely I’ll return the experience someday – you know when she’s 16 and wants to stay out late on a school night/drive my car/go on a date – I’ll be sure to ask her “but why?” and keep asking until she comes up with an answer I like!

One Response to “But Why?”


  1. Specifically Unspecific « Are You Zhazha? - October 25, 2010

    […] it. Not anymore though. It seems my lazy language is not sufficient for Nia. I thought that whole “why” phase was rough. This is just plain painful for […]

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