Mommy, Why Do We Exist?
Posted by Daniela Gunther on Dec 27, 2018
Last week, I was driving with my 7-year-old daughter, and this question came out of her mouth.
Dumbfounded by such a loaded inquiry from a young child, I felt it was important enough to stop the car, pull over, and be present with her.
I didn't want to feed her any of my pre-existing beliefs. I wanted to hear her thoughts and give her the space to let me know where that question came from.
With the car parked, I got out of the driver's seat and sat in the backseat next to my daughter.
"Well, what do you think? Why do you think we exist?" I asked.
"I think we are here to help each other," she replied.
"That's a great observation. Why do you think that?"
"Well, there's a new boy in my class. Usually I'm shy with new people, so I don't talk to them. But with this new boy, I felt connected and I wanted to reach out to him to make him feel welcome. Maybe that's why I was there."
Wow! I had no idea she could have such deep thoughts. Normally, 7-year-olds complain, and want to play, and are upset when not everything's perfect. But sometimes, these gems come out. We ended up having an incredible conversation about life, meaning, the universe and our interconnections.
As an educator, it was an amazing reminder of the power of holding space -- of how when we really take the time to sit and be present with children or anyone, they give you the chance to be taught.