“I don’t know; it’s just a peach!”
Standing at the kitchen sink, paring knife in hand, I was answering questions the way I swore I never would. Vague, impatient. My toddler clinging to my legs. A plate of sliced peaches in front of the wide-awake four-year-old at the table eliciting an endless amount of wonder.
“It’s called a peach because of its color.” (Or maybe “peach” is a color because of the fruit – I don’t always possess the sense authority that I portray when answering these questions…and of course that’s why they invented Google.)
“But what is it?”
It’s apropos that in Georgia, “The Peach State”, a child would be interested in this fuzzy fruit. But, seriously, from the deluge of questions you’d think Nori had never eaten a peach before!
It not a peach, Aunt Rachel! It NOT!!
“I don’t know; just eat it, ok?”
If anyone answered my questions like that I’d think they were hiding something! Yet as Nori, and now Muffin, become increasingly inquisitive (and demanding), I find myself saying, “I don’t know…” more and more.
And they don’t take that for an answer!
Nori and Muffins questions are random, untimely, sometimes nonsensical, and not always when I’m in the mood for explaining things.
Sometimes the question itself is embarrassing. In Publix, “Mommy? You take off your pants and pee pee in the potty? You take off your underwear?”
Sometimes I feel too exposed – “Ya pickin’ your nose, Aunt Rachel? You pickin’ it, like dis?” And I’ll look over to see a little person imitating me at my worst.
But sometimes, I’m just not in the mood to think about anything other than what I’m already thinking about. So I give a little person the brush off.
Now, before you think me an oger, I’m not always like that. I might just as easily be inspired to do a pantomime of how exactly bird poop can make you sick and how going in the street without a mommy is a bad idea. Or whip out a paper to diagram how electricity gets to our house and how far away the sun is. But my favorite, and I do mean my favorite, way to explain something is to hop on Google Images to further the enlightenment of whatever subject is at hand.
That’s if I’m not pretending I didn’t hear the question…or am not completely overwhelmed by the constancy of childrearing and the fact that there are always a dozen things that needed to be done yesterday, leaving me unmotivated and tired (but try explaining that to a child 🙂 ).
Let me just clear up a few things so I don’t leave you hanging: I am potty trained…I’m not keen on admitting it but there it is, the naked truth, for a cashier, bagger, and two fellow shoppers to hear.
Also, birds have ears; we’ve recently looked that up on Google. Reindeer are real (for some reason, I wasn’t even sure myself), so another big thank you to Google. And helicopters are different than airplanes.
But today, the question was: “What is it?! What is a peach?!”
So, I left a paring knife on the cutting board, dabbed a dish cloth at juice-dribbled chins, and held sticky fingers under the faucet. And two bouncy girls met me at my computer screen to see how peaches grow in clusters on long-leafed trees, with fuzzy skins in every shade of peach imaginable that come to an ever so delicate point on one end, and ripen to perfection before being collected in bushels from low-lying limbs.
And back again at the kitchen sink, paring knife in hand, I reveled in the fact that peaches are simply beautiful; bowls of them on sunlit tables, even more so.
And every moment spent sharing something with a child is a moment well-spent.