Wednesday, March 15, 2006

One parenting rite of passage down; next up: pot in his sock drawer

Tonight during dinner, The Kid asked me to tell him all about the different kinds of milk I've tasted. Cow's milk? Yes. Pig's milk? No. Sheep's milk? No. Goat's milk? Yes. People's milk? Yes.

(Quick sidenote: For some reason The Kid was under the impression that in people, one breast contains milk while the other is a water filtering system similar to what most people have on their refrigerator doors. I didn't ask, but I suspect he also thinks mommies can dispense crushed ice from their armpits.)

Anyway, people milk led to a breast feeding conversation (which we've had plenty of times before), and the breast feeding conversation led to babies, and (here it comes) babies led to THE conversation. The big one: "But how does the baby get in the mommy's tummy?"

Now for most young children, the fact that the baby is in mommy's "tummy" means that mommy must've eaten the baby. Obviously this requires some clarification, unless you want your child to believe that every woman is a potential cannibal waiting to happen. But simply saying, "No, the mommy doesn't eat the baby" isn't going to work. You're going to have to give an alternate explanation. I've always operated under the theory that if he's old enough to ask, he's old enough to know. So... here's what my child was old enough to know tonight:
  1. You have to have a mommy and a daddy to make a baby.
  2. It's a lot like growing a sunflower. (He grows them with his grandma every summer.)
  3. You need a seed.
  4. Daddies have the seeds in their penis. They're called "sperm"
  5. You need someplace safe to plant the seed. Mommies have a place called a womb. Which is sort of like a tummy, but a little different.
  6. You also need an egg, which mommies have in their womb.
  7. When the sperm finds the egg, a baby starts to grow.

Here is where I learn that small children are startlingly logical people. At least mine. There was NO WAY he was letting me skip from #6 to #7 without some more detail. HOW does the sperm find the egg?? Further things my son is old enough to know:

  1. The daddy puts his penis in the mommy's vagina.
  2. Mommy's vagina is sort of like a tunnel, and it ends at the womb.
  3. The sperm come out of daddy's penis, and swim to the egg.
  4. The sperm sort of burrows into the egg, and then a baby starts to grow.

He can now recite the story backwards and forward, complete with hand gestures depicting a swimming sperm burrowing its way into an egg. I am fully expecting that he will share his new found knowledge tomorrow with all his little preschool friends, which should make the daily note that comes home from teacher a little more interesting than usual.


jacque said...

Holy crap. Yet another reason I can't have children - there is no way I could say that with a straight face!

Megan said...

You are a brave, brave woman!! I thought I was doing good letting the older one at 9 be in the delivery room. Nope, you win with that great and informative explanation :o)

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