We went hiking today after church. At one point on our hike we were on a narrow ridge, looking down a loooooooong way-a tiny creek wandered its way through the woods below. My husband was holding our 6 year old son's hand; as they looked down at the water my husband said, "Look Barrett, that water is WAY down there, isn't it?"
"Well Barrett, you don't have any depth perception yet, so I bet it's hard for you to tell how far below us that water is."
"Um, yeah. What's death procession, Daddy?"
Then, on the way home we were discussing food. We were all starving. It was only natural, since I live with a bunch of Carnivores, that meat would come up:
Barrett: "I want bacon. That's pig meat, right momma?"
"Yes, that's pig meat."
"I've never had meat from Moody Meats, have I momma? Oh, yes I have. They sell bacon don't they momma? We've had bacon before. Does Moody Meats sell pig meat?"
OK-please keep this in mind: I've been the mother of boys and only boys for a very long time. Being gross just comes with the territory. So, here was my reply:
"Yes, Barrett. They sell Pygmies. But I know they don't sell Cannibals."
"What are Pygmies?"
"Well, Pygmies are short people who live in the jungle. They run around eating bananas and coconuts and stuff like that."
"What's a Cannibal, momma?"
Here is where I debated. Do I ruin his sweet innocence and tell him the truth? That there are people out there who actually EAT other people? Would that give him nightmares? Would he throw up in disgust? Should I just make up some weird answer? Tell him to go to sleep? After a 30 second debate within, I settled on the truth.
"Well sweetie, a cannibal is someone who eats another person."
To my surprise Barrett started chuckling.
"That would be funny!"
"What would be funny? Why on earth are you laughing Barrett?"
"It would be funny to see a big person running around the jungle eating little people!"