I don’t think that there’s ever been a time in my life that I’ve had to answer so many questions.
Being questioned by my parents when arriving home after curfew…those weren’t easy to answer, but I managed.
Being questioned during a job interview, I didn’t always give the best answers but I at least thought them to be educated.
But all of those tough questions in life were nothing compared to one simple word. One word, from three-year olds no less, that I find myself constantly fumbling to come up with an answer to numerous times every single day: “Why?”
Both of our girls have started questioning just about everything. From something as simple as butter melting on their waffles; “Why does it melt Mommy?” To explaining emotions; “Why does she look sad mommy?”
No matter what the question is, I find myself at a loss. I mean, I know why butter melts, but trying to explain it to a toddler isn’t easy. I can’t get into a detailed chemistry lesson with them about the changing properties of matter. And when it comes to emotions, well, I don’t know any parent who has an easy time explaining sadness and loss.
I love that they’re asking these questions. It’s a sign that they’re learning and wanting to understand and that’s an awesome thing.
I just wish I had all of the answers! I don’t know if there will ever come a time that I will have an answer for everything. Knowing this, I turned to friends to ask what they did when their kiddos started to ask “why” for just about everything.
One thing that another mom told me to try was turning the question around on to them. Not necessarily for every question, but maybe after the seventh or tenth “why?” Or perhaps for a question that I just really can’t figure out the answer to. That’s when you say, “Why do you think it does that?”
I honestly didn’t know if it would work but my husband and I both tried it and BAM! She suddenly had a pensive look on her face and we could actually see her trying to figure out the answer for herself.
Like I said; I love that they’re asking these questions, and as parents we are here to help them find answers now and throughout life. But it’s also rewarding to see their little wheels start turning as they try to figure it out on their own.