My daughter has hit that wonderful, heartbreaking age when she want to know all the things, but isn’t quite capable of understanding the meaning behind those things. When my preschooler is asking difficult questions, I sometimes wonder why we don't have to write a special set of exams in order to become parents. Sure, if I have to answer the question “why is it bedtime?” one more time, I may lose my mind, but it’s not those questions that are bittersweet.
My daughter is 4-years-old now, and she has a “why” question pretty much every minute of every day. I try really hard to be patient during the more inane questions. You know, the ones that they already knows the answer to, but ask every single day anyway (like, "Why do I have to wear a jacket today?" Because it's winter and water freezes outside right now. Lordy.). The worst are the questions about each page and character of the book we read each and every night. (It took months of suffering through those before I realized I could actually turn the question around and she would happily answer it herself. Go figure.)
There are times, though, when she will pose a question that my husband and I just have no clue where to start answering. How is it that a preschooler can make you wonder if you’re a good enough parent, just by posing a single question? It’s truly unbelievable. Negotiating the finer points of this stage in my child’s development has been interesting so far. I always thought I’d look forward to when she was talking, but now? I’m both excited and terrified of what will come out of her mouth next.