I don’t remember what I made for dinner the other night. But, I do remember the conversation. And now, you will too. We do our best to eat meals together as a family. It is said, “A family who eats together, stays together.” I’d edit that, adding to it, and say, “A family who eats and talks together and doesn’t forget to say grace stays together.” Our family talks about everything under the sun and in the heavens above after giving God thanks for the food on our table. In our home, there’s often talk of the latest on the franch. And so it went the other night…
“I’m going to castrate the bull calf tomorrow,” my husband said in such a matter-of-fact way you’d think he says it every day. “I’m going to be home in the morning and do it while you are at school, so you won’t be able to help…”
“Wait, dad, what does that mean…what do you have to do to Sunrise?” interrupted our six-year-old daughter. There was silence. My husband was about to drink his water but instead slowly lowered his glass without taking a sip.
“Ohhhh, um, well it means, that well,” he cleared his throat, “…I’m going to…I need to do something so he won’t be able to have babies anymore.”
Our daughter gave him a look like he was being silly…again. “Daaaad, boys can’t have babies…,” she corrected. She giggled like he was teasing her.
My husband looked at me pleading with his eyes for help. I just smiled back enjoying watching him squirm. He got himself in this situation, he can get himself out. I glanced at our two older kids who had stopped eating and were just staring at my husband.
My husband turned to our ten-year-old son who loves to read science books from the library on his own and just last year had come across a chapter on reproduction. By the way, I highly recommend that way!! It’s way less awkward. So knowing my son was “in the know,” my husband said, “I know, why don’t YOU explain it to her, son.”
Our son froze and stared wide-eyed at him like a deer caught in headlights. His eyes begged, please don’t make me… Breaking his promise to his fourth-grade teacher, our son began with, “Ummmmm….ookkaay…”
I realized our sweet, obedient son was actually going to try. I scolded my husband by saying his name sternly. Our son was off the hook and stopped fidgeting.
Finally, my husband came out with, “Well, boys, um…boys, you see, have to help with making the babies, and he, well he won’t be able to…help anymore.” True, but, that’s leaving out a lot of details! He’s not going to get away with just that, I thought.
We all looked in our daughter’s direction dreading the follow-up question. Will that be enough for her? And…lucky for my husband, it was. “Ohhhh,” she said nodding her head in understanding, like she now totally gets it.
The next day, my husband was late for dinner and we ate without him. Smart move.