So, a couple of weeks ago, at about 10:00 at night, Jack got out of bed and started yelling down the stairs to us. He was very upset. In between his sobs and trying to breathe, I was finally able to decifer that he was upset because he wanted to know if "war was going to happen again".
Hmmm....lovely.....two hours after bedtime is not exactly the perfect timing for a conversation about WAR with a six year old. But, that is how it works with Jack. He will learn something and this new piece of knowledge will float around in his brain for a day, or a few weeks, or a few months until one day, usually in the middle of the night, he really begins to process it and it upsets him.
It would have been so much easier if when he learned about the Civil War (in February!) he came home from school and talked about it. On that day, when I said "Hey Jack, what did you do in school today?", he could have said "Oh Mom, we learned about the Civil War, and it was a bad war and it is scary, and could it happen again?, blah, blah, blah", rather than "ummm....we had p.e. today."
But, that is not the way Jack does things so, this left us talking about war at 10:00 at night with an over-tired 6 year old. We talked about why our country fought the Civil War and the Revolutionary War. We talked about how nobody wants there to be any wars, but sometimes they are needed. We talked about how it is very, very unlikely that there will ever be another war like the Civil War, in our country, and we talked about how we are lucky to live in the most powerful country in the world.
Ok, done, he slept the rest of the night. Whew!
So, after taking this whole war thing so seriously, you can imaine our suprise when, while out to lunch this past Sunday, Jack asked "Was anyone rooting for England when America PLAYED them at war?" And, then he followed that question up with "Didn't England PLAY agains France at war before they PLAYED against us?"
Hmmmm....now war doesn't seem quite so scary when you phrase it that way, does it Jack?!?!