Sometimes I wish my kids would make an appointment with me to talk about important stuff (like fertilization and s-e-x).
It’s not that I’m too busy to talk to them, it’s more because I’d really like a few moments alone with Google to get myself psyched up and prepared for these big discussions. Ideally, I want time to pray, check google, call my mom, have a good cry with a friend, and beg my husband to please handle the discussion Realistically, my kids always ask me life’s hardest questions when I’m unprepared.
I’m driving down the road one afternoon, returning from the carpool line. I have my boys (kindergarten and 3rd grade), plus a carpooler (Boo, 5th grade boy). I’m running through my afternoon checklist, mentally preparing dinner and fretting about homework. My second grader decided to start asking me questions I was completely unprepared to answer.
Watty: Mommy, did you know that daddy spiders fertilize mommy spiders.
me: Well, yes.
Watty: And… daddy ants fertilize the queen ant, right.
Watty: So, did daddy fertilize you to make me?
Boo is about to bust a gut trying not to laugh. I’m looking straight ahead, both hands on the wheel. I am NOT making eye contact.
me: Well, yes.
I’m trying hard not to think where this conversation is headed, wishing a giant hole would swallow me up. I have one hand on the phone, wondering if I still have time to call my husband. I wish life had a “phone-a-friend” option.
Watty: So, the queen ant has no use for the daddy ants after they fertilize her, right.
me: I’m not sure.
I am pressing down on the accelerator, trying to end this car-ride of shame. Boo is trying to whisper to me to tell me what to say. I am NOT listening!
Watty: And the mommy spider eats the daddy spider, right?
me: I think so.
OMW OMW OMW, whatdoisay help help help!
Watty: So… after daddy fertilized you, did you want to eat him?
Boo is now red faced, tears running down his cheeks. We are at Boo’s house, but he’s not budging out of my car until he hears the end of this story. I am about ready to open the car door and “help” Boo out of the car.
me: Right after he fertilized me?
me. Absolutely not. It was the furthest thing from my mind.
At this point, I’m trying to keep a straight face and NOT look Boo in the eye as I shove him out of my car. I’m trying desperately to not think about where the conversation might be going. Mentally, I have my fingers in my ears and am screaming “nanananana, I can’t hear you!”
GoGo (my precious baby): So what about later, did you want to eat daddy then?
me: Was that the ice cream truck? Lets go see if we can catch it.
Yes, I bailed. I flashed back to the last few weeks of pregnancy, the days of labor, and suddenly, I empathized with the female spider. There were moments.. well… um… Look, is that the shoe sale truck?
The funniest part of the whole story is yet to come. Later that night, when my husband came home, the first thing GoGo asked him was
Daddy, when you fertilized mommy, were you worried she would eat you like a spider or just throw you out of the nest like an ant.
Hubby had this terrified “deer in the headlight” looks on his face. Then he said
Was that the ice cream truck?
My husband says this was NOT his response. He claims he responded with something along the lines of “people are not like insects.” I like my version of the story much better.
Do you have any tales to share? I’d love to hear how you would have handled the conversation! Any parenting advice for the next time my kids ask “those” questions?