“Mommy, I’m scared.”
What are you scared of?
It’s the bars to his crib.
It’s wood, K. Just like... the other furniture annnnd - some of your toys - and Oh! You know what else is wood? Trees! Wood is made from trees - trees are wood.
I caress the crib like it’s the softest, most soothing thing he could do at that moment. Oooh, feel how smooth and cool it is. It feels so nice and you like to put your feet on it when you sleep. Touch it with me, K.
He marches on his knees while he slides his little hand all around the top edge and smoothes the bars. He lies down again.
Mommy made what scared you go away. You’re ok; you're not alone - the light is on out there and I’m nearby. And God is with you. He’s always with you.
I realize I said, “He” and decide it’s not the time to fight the feminist fight tonight or get didactic about the fact that God is above species and more than an identifiable sex, so I don’t care that I used “He” - it worked for me all my life. The only thing K. knows about God so far is that we thank God for our food and the love in everything we eat. He's gone to church with me and my folks and we've said that it's Jesus' home - not usually "God's" but "Jesus'."
Hmm. I think that God is everywhere, in everything. He’s inside you and me, around us all the time. You know what I think God is?
You do? What?
Then don’t say, ‘Yes.’ Say, ‘No’, or ‘I don’t know.’
“I don’t know.”
I think God is LOVE. You like Love?
I LOVE love.
“When we see God.”
You mean, ‘When do we see God?’
I don’t know. When do you think?
In the pause, I know that his answer is going to be deep. Maybe he remembers something from before his time on this plane, as K., my son. When do we see God, indeed?
“When we go to His house.”
I delight in that. Yes! That makes sense. Do you know where His house is?
You do? Where?
His house is church.
“Oh. I thought he was #5.”
“Yeah. I thought he was # 5. Green lives at #2. All his other friends.”
Gee, I hope that's a reference to some TV show he saw.
You thought God lives at # 5, like we live at B-03?
Close your eyes, K. What do you see?
“I see these bars,” he says, touching them.
You see the bars when you close your eyes? No, your eyes are open. Close your eyes and tell me what you see.
He opens them and smiles, turns his head towards the wall, lifts his head to look at me and smiles, then turns his head back to face where I am, smiling, all the while saying, “I see these bars. I see these bars.”
CLOSE YOUR EYES! I’m sure raising my voice helps to scare him less.
What do you see?
“I will close my eyes and God will bring me a horse.”
“Yeah and D. will come see the horse.”
D. is our nanny. He has come to an age where he wants to share with her news from home - whether it's a new toy, clothing, concept. He loves her.
That sounds great. Will you ride the horse?
And what color is the horse?
“No! No, red.”
A red horse. That’s wonderful, K.. Close your eyes and dream about that.
“Mommy, I don’t want you to go in the kitchen and cook.”
No? Where do you want me to go?
“In the living room and listen to music.”
I turn to walk out.
“Mommy, I’m scared.”
It’s ok to be scared. Good night.