My six year old hates going to bed. Hates it. So it is that for the last couple of years, since she's become finally able to have conversations, she keeps finding ways to keep me talking to her.
I've had conversations about what death is. I've had conversations about the phases of the moon. I've had conversations about anything under the sun. For the most part, I try to answer questions, but with an eye towards not letting it take up more than a few minutes. Every once in a while, I've had to resort to the "last question" card (as in, "I know you have lots of questions about this, but you also need to get some sleep, so I'm just gonna answer one more question, and we can save the rest for tomorrow") every once in a while, but for the most part, our conversations only take a few minutes away from bedtime.
Moreover, they're often a rare window into the mind of a kid who, for the most part, is very reticent to share her thoughts on anything.
Tonight, we talked about families and marriage.
"Mom, some kids have two moms, and some kids have two dads."
"You're right. And some kids might not have a mom or a dad around, but a grandparent or aunt or uncle."
"You know what matters? That kids have families, and their family love them, no matter what kind of family."
"But some families have two dads, or two moms. Girls can have two moms or two dads, and boys can have two moms or two dads."
"Yep, and that's ok. It doesn't matter what your family looks like, just that you have one. Goodnight, bunny."
"I don't have to marry anyone who's mean to me. Like if they tell me I have to marry them, I will say 'no, I won't'."
"Yep. When people marry, it's usually to live together for a long time, so you should always try to marry someone who will be nice to you."
"But you won't stop being my family."
"No, baby. I never will. You can come visit me whenever you want."
"Or I could clean my room up and take a lot of toys out, and get a bigger bed so there's room for whoever I marry. Then I can still live with you."
"That's another way to do it. We'll see. But honey, you should go to sleep. Night night."
Good night, my baby. You'll always be my baby.