“what is death, mummy?” and for once I had no answer. Nothing I could deflect, nothing.
So when that happens, I tell the truth.
“Grandad Mike was very poorly, and was very very ill and died” I tell her, making a mental note that by saying “very poorly” and “very very ill” she’ll now think she’s going to die when she has a cold.
“I’m never going to die mummy” she tells me. I think she thinks this means she’ll never be very poorly. I think this is the best explanation I can give her right now.
I’m going to be off work tomorrow looking after her unless something miraculous happens overnight – I fully expect to be tucked up in her bed with her as I was last night. So tomorrow I’ll find the old photos. I might show her my wedding video (it’s only ten minutes long). She can see something of the grandad she’ll never meet.
This conversation initially came about after watching Hotel Transylvania, and me explaining about Dracula being upset Mavis wants to leave home, but actually most of us leave home at some point. I then tried to explain how I left home, but my home was my mum and dad, and that’s how dad came into it, and yet again we talked about death.
There’s talk of us getting a goldfish. H was disappointed when we didn’t get one immediately, we’ve said we’ll talk about it. I’m thinking more, and maybe that’s how she’ll understand death. Having said that, I fear having pets that can’t tell you they’re hungry. It’s a disaster waiting to happen, it really is. Mind, she might learn what death is then. Sob.