The other day, the boys and I were driving in the car and out of nowhere Oli said, "Mommy, my heart is getting bigger!"
"Cool buddy, it's good to have a big heart," I said.
"Mommy, is Athan's heart getting bigger too?" Oli asked.
"Yep, Athan's heart is getting bigger too."
"Mommy, is Jilly's heart getting bigger?"
Hmm... here I paused for a minute, not sure exactly what to say. "Well..." I started. "Well, right now Jilly's heart is broken."
"Her's heart is broken in your tummy, Mommy?" (And yes, he said, 'her's heart'.)
"Yep, honey, Jilly's heart is broken in my tummy, but when she comes out, we're going to fix it."
"Are we gonna fix it with tape?"
"If only it were that simple," I wanted to say. But, I said, "No, we're going to take her to a doctor and they're going to fix her heart. You know, Athan's heart was broken when he was born too, but the doctors fixed it for us."
And at this, Athan with his tiny voice said, "Awww... why's Jilly's heart broken?"
Again I paused. "Umm... I'm not really sure buddy. I wish I knew. But, the important thing is that we're going to fix it."
And at that they both seemed satisfied, but it made me start thinking, exactly what should we tell them? What are we going to tell them when she's in the hospital after she's born and then again a few months down the road?
They're so young- so "little". But, I think they understand more than I give them credit for. I know they don't really understand. The heart is really this foreign thing to them. They can recognize a "heart" shape, but they don't know what their "hearts" really are. So, I'm trying to keep it as simple as I can for them. I know that's what they need, and really, keeping it simple makes it easier for me, too. Sometimes looking at this situation from the view point of a two and three year old makes this almost bearable.