Thursday, May 5, 2011

Taking Little Kids to the Cemetery

For some reason I recently remembered when our three sons were small, and we drove from our old home in Ventura County, California, to the San Fernando Mission Cemetery where my dad is buried. (Daddy died at the start of my Junior year in high school.)

That day we brought along little spades and things for the kids, aged about 1, 4, and 8, to help as we pulled weeds and cleaned up around the headstone a bit. Of course we stopped and bought flowers before we arrived, and talked to the boys about where we were going, and why.

Ben, the youngest, was oblivious to anything but playing with the water and dirt. Tighe, as oldest, was fairly familiar with the routine. We didn't get to the cemetery too often, but he had heard stories about the grandpa who was buried there. He had come out with us more often than either of his brothers. He knew we would always leave flowers and a flag. My daddy had been military to his bones.

Jeremy was finally old enough to pay attention on this trip, though, and for the first time he questioned me.

"That's my grandpa under there?"
"Yes, Son."
More weeds were pulled as he thought about the concept. Jeremy was often serious and quiet.
"Is he going to grow again?"
"No, Honey."
He looked at me with one of those befuddled looks only a child can give a really dumb parent.
"Then why did you plant him?"

There are a few questions a parent just can't stop laughing long enough to answer.


sherrie said...

Great story, I'm glad you're storytelling again.

Dean K Miller said...

What a wonderful, and obviously forgetful moment! One good reason never to grow up. Sure I complete some adult duties, but grow up, never. A child for life, hoping to brighten the life of a child.

John Paul McKinney said...

'Out of the mouths of babes...." Many thanks for the chuckle