Monday, October 18, 2010

explaining death to a 4-year-old

This morning my husband's grandmother died. I worked last night, so sometime while I was sleeping he explained what happened to my daughter.

Later on before dinner, she hid behind my son's bed. I realized she was crying, and when I asked her what was the matter she burst out with "Grandma died!" So we had our first conversation about death.

"Can I touch her?"

"Yes, but you can't laugh or play around. It's a very serious occasion at a wake."

"Did God take her to heaven?"

"Yes, she's up in heaven with God. Her body will be in the casket, but she's not really there. It's just her body."

"Did they rip her head off?


She doesn't have a head anymore?"

"Uh, yeah, she still has a head. She just can't talk to you anymore. What made her who she is, how she talks to you, that won't be there. Go on and eat your soup now, sweetie."

She seemed satisfied with this. We'll see how the wake goes.

Rest in peace, Gram.