Is is possible for a 5-year old to begin philosophical thinking? You know. The kind of person who thinks of how we came to be. I'm reminded of that character on Northern Exposure who was the disk jockey. Chris was his name. In one episode, Chris wonders if we are a flea on the tick's back or something to that effect. Tonight, Grace seemed to be spiraling into a philosophical debate with herself and me.
"Mom, Zoe says that when we go to Heaven that our whole body goes in the ground...like our skin and everything. I told her it doesn't."
"Grace, everyone has a different idea of what happens when we go to Heaven. Next time Zoe talks about that, tell her she needs to ask her mommy and daddy about it. Okay?
Are you talking about how we believe that our soul goes to Heaven when we die? You know the part inside of us that thinks and feels and knows we are Gracie or Mommy or Meggie."
"Uh huh. Zoe says it doesn't. I don't ever want to grow up and get old."
"Grace, it takes a long time to grow up. You don't need to worry about getting old and becoming a lady."
"I don't ever want to have a baby and be a lady."
"Gracie, you don't have to do anything you don't want to do when you are an adult, but honey, we all grow up. We can't make our growth stop."
"Who goes to Heaven, Mommy? Does everybody?"
"Not everyone goes to Heaven Grace."
"You have to be a good person to go to Heaven."
"Am I good Mommy?"
"Yes, Grace, you are very good. You'll go to Heaven when you are an old lady."
Meanwhile, I'm thinking, "Where is this coming from? Why is Gracie so obsessed with death, dying, and Heaven. More importantly, why are we talking about this at nine o'clock at night?"
"Mom, where is Heaven?"
"Uh. It is a place very, very high in the sky up past the clouds where the angels live...where unicorns and pegasus horses live. It is a beautiful place."
"Why do unicorns and pegusus live there? You said they aren't real."
"You're right Grace. They aren't real. Mom is trying to tell you that Heaven is a beautiful place where you'll go when you are a very old lady. (Fingers crossed.) I've never been there so I don't know for sure. We live on a big ball called Earth."
"Mom, IT IS NOT A BALL! It is called Earth and it is a planet."
"Alright Grace! It is shaped like a ball."
"It is a very large. Mom, who told you about Heaven?"
"My mommy and daddy told me about it."
"Who told them?"
"I suppose we all learned it from Jesus."
"How does Jesus know?" Questions were coming out in rapid fire sequence...bam, stuttering mom, bam, more stuttering mom, bam, bam, more bumbling stuttering mom, bam, bam, bam...
"Where is Jesus? Who is he? How do we know him?"
"Grace, you learned about Jesus at your day care, right?"
"You tell me about Jesus."
"I don't wanna Mommy."
"Where did we come from Mommy? Who lived before us?"
"No, Mommy, not the dinosaurs. Which people lived before you and me?"
"Well, let's see. Your Grandma Kathy's mommy is Grandma Lorraine, right?"
"Grandma Lorraine's mommy and daddy lived before us, right?"
"Grace, it is time to go to sleep honey."
"Mommy, I want to talk. I want to talk to you."
"Grace, we can talk and figure stuff out together anytime honey. You are yawning, and well, Mommy, needs to get some rest too. I'm turning out the lights now."
"Okay Mommy. Sing me Cici and Chickory-Chick."