“Josie, will you sing me my song?”
I have been babysitting Jack for almost three years, so I am ashamed when I can’t quite remember the words. We’re laying in his little toddler bed and I’m hanging my feet off at an awkward angle so he won’t make me take off my shoes. I scrunch my nose and think a bit.
“Uh…jumping, jumping, Jack…”
“No, ‘Jingle Jack’, Josie.”
“Oh, yeah. Jingle, jingle Jack. A..ah…”
Jack sighs a big sigh. “Let me sing it first.”
I let him sing me three songs and secretly wish I had a recorder because there is nothing cuter than a little southern 4 year old singing songs.
“Okay, now your turn,” he says.
Luckily, it’s a simple song and with my memory refreshed I can launch into it confidently. As I sing, I become vaguely aware of four warm little fingers pressing up against my mouth. I try to sing past them, lips scrunched, because I know the inevitable is coming. The tactic every toddler has down to a science. Delay bedtime.
“Josie, where does your voice come from?”
“From my throat.”
“There are words in there.”
“Where do they come from?”
“Uh…well, they live there, and when I pick which words I want to use, they come up.”
Jack’s parents have already taught Jack all about blood cells and digestion and so I hope Jack doesn’t scoff at my simplistic explanations.
“How do they come up?”
I sigh, roll over to my side and put my hand on his little belly.
“You have a little box in your tummy called a diaphragm and when you want words, it pushes them up into your throat and then they come out of your mouth.”
Honestly, Jack, I have no idea. Josie didn’t pay attention in her classes at school, which is why she still depends on babysitting for a good portion of her income. Does that satisfy you? Huh, kid?
“What’s a dive fram?”
“Ask your father, he can tell you better than I can.” He’s a doctor, so this is one statement I can say confidently. And as a bonus, it gets me off the hook.
Little Jack nods his agreement that, yes, Josie doesn’t know what she’s talking about and clearly asking Daddy is the only obvious option.
“Okay, I’ll ask Daddy what a dive fram is.”
I pat myself on the back for cleverly ending the conversation, kiss Jack on the cheek, and leave him to dream sweetly.
It’s not until, oh, about an hour ago, that I realize what I’ve done. I picture adorable, innocent Jack looking up to bewildered parents and asking to know more about these “dive frams” Josie told him about.
Not. my best. move.