Thursday, April 24, 2008

Simone knows too much

No, I'm not talking about life and death, I'm talking about sex. So I told you all how one day in the car, with the utmoust sincerity and very resolutely, Simone said that NEXT time, she wants to see us MAKE the baby. This kid's seen it all when it comes to carrying and birthing babies, so it was only a natural request. Well, B and I got a good laugh and told her we didn't think so; luckily that's the last we've heard of that one.

NOW, Holly Disco (our Christmas kitty that we've been so thankful for) is in . . . heat. I don't know how it happened, not even technically. I don't mind admitting I know very little about a cat's reproductive system. Disco's still so little! She's my little kitten, damnit. I've never had a cat that has gone into heat.

Anyway, So I was clueless when I heard her meowing at 7am yesterday morning. This cat doesn't say much (B's never heard her meow) I thought she was trapped somewhere. When I actually got up (930ish, hehe) I went looking for her to make sure she wasn't locked in a room somewhere. She was just chillin' under the table by then, so I wondered why she was meowing but, oh well.

Then last night, I noticed her ass up in the air. Her tail is off to the side and she's purring at everybody's feet. And when I say everybody, I mean both the dogs who are just trying to nap, poor things. Usually, she's way too cool for the dogs (as all cats are), she has certainly never layed down beside them and in front of them purring and putting her ass in their face. So it dawned on me. Shit. She was supposed to get fixed last week and we forgot, we would've done it just in time, too. She has an appt. this next Monday, but Monday is a long ways a way.
So I wondered how this topic would be broached with Simone and I decided, as most parents do about most things, avoid the subject at all cost. I managed okay, Simone seemed oblivious most of the evening. At bed time, Simone was coloring on the bed (and jumping on it, and being crazysleepyrotten) I walk in to suddenly find her with kitty on the bed and kitty's purring and Simone is so excited that kitty is giving her so much attention.

Simone: Mommy, kitty's acting funny. (she's says quizzically and with a giggle.)

Me: I know, now get her off my bed. (I say very authoritatively)

Simone: Why Mom? she likes me. (she says sadly)

Usually Disco runs from Simone if she hasn't already been trapped by the death grip. And she's was just petting her back and Holly was purring away.
Me: I know honey (I say sympathetically). Now, get her off MY bed.
Ugh, the phone rings. As I'm on the phone, I watch her pet kitty, and I'm unnerved by the fact this cat is standing on my bed. Just as I get off the phone she grabbed kitty's tail (kitty immediately raises her ass straight in the air) and then Simone laughs and tickles Disco's ass with the end of her own tail, to kitty's obvious delight. Simone thought it was hilarious (and it kind of was in a really disturbing way because I've never seen a cat act that way either) but I took action, I wanted that cat away from my daughter and off my goddamn bed.
I shoo the cat off (basically yell at her in a gruff voice and clap my hands). And of course, yay, Simone and I get another opportunity to talk about boys and girls and pee-pee's and how girls carry and feed babies, etc., etc. And then I break it to her, Disco is growing up and she wants to make babies and that's why we're getting her 'fixed'.

She was so excited, her eyes lit up, "oh please please please please please can we let her have babies, Mommy?! Please." So I start describing dog and cat overpopulation ad nauseam, and she knows all about rescuing animals and finding homes for them. She seems to understand, and she laughs it up and when I tell her if Sam and Nanna*, weren't fixed, they'd have had lots of babies by now. She giggles with glee and talks about how cute they'd be, and at the thought of all those puppies. It's like 4 yo heaven.

Anyway, it was the kind of conversation I was not expecting yesterday, or to have with my four year old. I'm okay with her knowing lots about babies development and the birthing part, but when it comes to making babies, I don't want my kid being the only kid in her Kindergarten class next year who knows how babies are made.

I was long-winded and boring enough to get around it this time, once again. Close call, big sigh of relief. Suddenly, at the end of our conversation, she says, very matter of factly, "Well, if Disco wants to, even after she is fixed, she CAN get married and NOT have any babies. Isn't that right, Mama?"

I smile and say, "Yes, that's right." She looks very happy about that. My little feminist.

*Nanna is our nickname for Elli Mae as Ellie brings us about a dozen of Simone's toys and things a day when she wants attention, like she's cleaning up after her. Simone get's pissed at Ellie about this (probably because if no one takes these items from her she chews them all to shit) so I thought if I called her Nanna, like on Petar Pan, she might not hate Ellie so much. It's kind of working too by the way


c. said...

Oh. The sex talk. I am in complete denial that I'll ever have to talk about it with my kids. I'm sure I'll be traumatized by the experience.

And that whole thing with Simone and the cat and the tail....EEEWWW. Would have yelled to get that damn cat off my bed, too.

Lyndsay said...

I spoke with a guy from Norway and asked him when he found out what sex was and he said he just always knew, since before grade 1. And to him this was the most natural thing because sex is natural. It was interesting...I think I knew around 11 and I know someone who didn't really know until 13.

anarchist mom said...

Yeah, and I've always told myself I won't lie, and you should see how my daughter loves homebirth and water birth, and knows all about baby development, and how can you omit sex? I mean I've managed to escape the particulars, but I'd rather her hear it from very clearly and not judgmentally from me then learn it with shame, and lies, etc. So, simplicity and honesty utnil I'm backed into a corner. Four and a half years and counting :)

Julia said...

Well, being a biologist, I told Monkey some time ago about cells and how we are all made of them. Then, when I was pg with A, we talked about how babies start from one special cell and grow until they are ready to come out. Then, after he died, sometime after, she wanted to know where that first cell comes from. So in come chromosomes and small special cells from mom and dad, that get together to make the first cell. With a lot of emphasis on how rarely that happens and how rarely that first cell gets to implant. A few more months later she wants to know how mom's and dad's small special cells get together. I start another long story, and get through the once a month mom part when a squirrel shows up on the porch and saves me from having to explain the dad cell get to mom cell part. She hasn't asked again yet.
This whole long comment is because I think it's possible to redirect the question to the level that you are comfortable with her knowing and that is still very much true and is a very useful level of knowledge to build in early on.