The gift of a complicated question

Over the course of one weekend, my 6-year-old asked me two thinking cap questions.

“Is magic real?” and

“Are we rich?”


I love answering complicated questions. In fact, the conversations which follow these questions rank high on my top ten list of favorite parenting moments.


Well, obviously, I get really buzzed from the power and responsibility tied up in answering these questions.


I’m grown up enough to answer such questions?


You think I know the answers to such questions???


Are you saying my answers are the right answers?


Honey, I was hoping you had the answers.

Oh, how I am humbled by these moments, though, as much as I am empowered.

In these moments, I understand how much my answers will shape my son’s thinking.

But in these moments, I also understand how little my answers truly will shape his thinking. My answers, in the long run, will only set him thinking more.

In these moments, I am indebted to him for making me feel – even temporarily – as if I am brilliant, all-knowing, and in control. Simultaneously, though, I am in awe of the complete and utter faith a six-year-old has in his mother, and grateful for the gift he has given me — the simplicity with which I may answer.

When else in our lives are we gifted with such simplicity, such confidence, such love and respect?

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