If my husband knew I were writing a blog about our 2 year olds’ sensitivity, he’d probably give me grief. I guess I really never understood,or perhaps I underestimated, Davey’s level of emotional comprehension. We used to worry that he didn’t understand pain, as it’s very unusual for him to cry even when injured. Truthfully, it used to worry us, but not so much anymore.
Of course these days, Davey’s had to deal with my emotional roller coaster especially on these final few weeks of my second pregnancy. He’s seen me cry more, although I do try to leave the room if I feel the tears coming on. He’s seen me get upset and lose patience. He’s seen me exhausted. Frankly, he’s had to deal with mommy’s entire emotional spectrum, but he’s handled it pretty well.
Last week, I recorded “Mickey’s Christmas Carol”, which of course is Disney’s version of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”. I thought how wonderful it would be for him to watch especially since he’s a HUGE Mickey Mouse fan. What I didn’t anticipate was the fact that my two year old was able to completely understand what was going on. And why didn’t I anticipate that? He’s a very smart child, very intuitive, and always eager to know more. He’s constantly questioning things and doing his best to regurgitate what he’s learned. So, why wouldn’t the movie have an emotional impact on him?
He was glued to the television for the entire 30 minutes of the production and when the Ghost of Christmas Future showed what was to come, Davey seemed to take it to heart. It wasn’t so much Scrooge would die alone, as it was that Davey understood what was to happen to Tiny Tim. As he watched Mickey kneeling at Tiny Tim’s graveside, Davey climbed into my lap and said, “No, Mama, Mickey sad. Tiny Tim go to Heaven.” And he put his arms around my neck and hugged me.
How did my son know this? My husband and I have never really talked about life and death. I love to tell him stories of my younger brother who died of leukemia. He’s been with me to my brother’s grave to put balloons and flowers on it. Perhaps his memory is so astute that he remembers all of this. I never cry at my brother’s grave, but I do become slightly misty when I tell Davey that his uncle is part of his namesake.
I smile, though, as I’m writing this because I’m proud of my son for having a sensitive side, an emotional side, a side that can hurt and understand even emotional pain as complex as that of losing a loved one. I smile because I also know that my husband and I are doing a good job raising him to try to deal with all of life’s little nuances. I smile because I also know that my husband and I are doing a good job in raising him as a Christian boy.
We haven’t watched Mickey’s Christmas Carol again. Not because I don’t think it’s acceptable, but more so because we all have been just slightly too busy preparing for Henry’s impending arrival. I am concerned that Davey may cry when he sees Mickey at Tiny Tim’s grave again. I don’t like seeing my baby cry, but to know that it’s not because of fear but because of a level of sympathy and love makes me feel good as a mom.