Wednesday, October 11, 2006


This morning I ran down to the basement to put in one more load of laundry before Sesame Street ended. That's right, I've been letting Nutmeg watch SS about three times a week, much to her delight and Epu's annoyance. Today, the Street had ended when I got back upstairs and PBS was showing something involving human-sized puppets.

Nutmeg didn't seem to be watching it. So I was totally unprepared when she asked me a second after I turned it off, "Do you like Barney?"


"Do you like Barney the Dinosaur?"

That's right, today I exposed my daughter to Barney. And I'm sure that when Daddy comes home, she won't remember anything fun we did today. She'll just pipe up, "I watched Barney!"

As if this conversation weren't going badly enough, Nutmeg has finally started in with the "Why?" So when I said, "No, I don't!" she of course answered, "Why? Why don't you like Barney?"

You know what I've realized in the last few days? I thought I had a lot of knowledge and wisdom to share with my 2-year-old, but in fact, I don't know why hardly anything is. I mean, why don't I like Barney? Why is the turn signal on our car broken? Why did I buy a nice dining room table that I don't want her to scratch with her fork? Every conversation we have no devolves, after some series of increasingly skimpy answers from me, into, "I don't know, Nutmeg."

And then, naturally:
"Why don't you know, Mommy?"


Kori said...

This is the danger of having a highly verbal child. I'm sure the Nut can take you to places of "why" that other two year olds only dream of.

This is also probably why parents of small children, despite the hassle, so often attend church regularly. I always used to think, as I stood in the choir and looked out at the hoards of mischievous toddlers, that parents should get a free pass on attendance while their kids are little. It must feel nice, though, to be in a place where it's understood that the big questions don't have definite answers. I mean, if God isn't giving you an answer to every "why" question, how can you be expected to? It's the ultimate home of the "mystical because I said so."

Anonymous said...

Ack! I can't even imagine my child reaching that stage. Because I was one of the most persistent "why" kids, I'm sure I'll get at least double from my own as payback. But until it happens I'm going to not think about it.