Toddler Talk Tuesday: Cicadas, Death, and Doctors

Here in New Jersey it is chilly. I mean, 50 degrees in the morning for at least a week straight chilly. For goodness sake, the leaves are starting to change.

At the beginning of September.  Yikes.

I associate the hum of cicadas with prickly, sticky heat – not decidedly fall-ish temperatures. Somehow, though, the cicadas are still doing their weirdly loud vibration noise thing. It’s as puzzling to adults as it is to kids, really.

I had this conversation with Squish recently as we were playing in the backyard and heard those dastardly bugs:

Squish: “What’s that?”

Me: “It’s a cicada – that same bug we saw last week on the table. The one mom had to flip over to get the bug off.”

Squish: “Oh, yeah.”

Me [Because Always Be Teaching]: “Say, those bugs have a sort of shell-like skin that they grow out of and leave behind, then they grow a new one. It’s sort of like hermit crabs, like we read about in your magazine.”

Squish: “People do that too. When you die you get a new shell.”

Me: [Pause] “Yes, some people do believe that.”

Squish: “And when you’re at a funeral you get your new house.”

Me: “Uhh…. Hmm….”

I didn’t know where to go with that one! Luckily she was distracted and started talking about something else soon after. I will say that ever since her great-grandfather passed away this summer, she’s been making comments like this – comments that show her brain is still trying to figure out what death is all about.

This somewhat lighter – but slightly horrifying – conversation was later that day as we talked about my husband going to the doctor for his checkup:

Squish: “Will the doctor give him a shot?”

Me: “No, he doesn’t need a shot.”

Squish: “What will she do to him?”

Me: “Well, she’ll check his blood pressure, his pulse, make sure his limbs have full range of motion, listen to his heart -”

Squish: “Will she peel his skin to do that?”

Me: “No! That would hurt! She’ll use a stethoscope!”

I just don’t even know where this thought could’ve come from!

7 thoughts on “Toddler Talk Tuesday: Cicadas, Death, and Doctors

  1. Maybe because it’s called a funeral “home”? I remember being confused about that as a child when my grandfather died.

    My friend Luna had a very entertaining twenty minutes recently when a cicada fell down the chimney and out the fireplace and her cat spotted it. Who knew cicadas could entertain so well?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh I so get Squish! My grandfather died when I was a bit older and still I could not figure out what those grown-ups were telling me. So in my mind, he moved into this old pine box and slept a lot! I did miss fishing with him and asked my grandmother when he was coming back to her house…golly it was hard to understand the concept. Bravo for you making her understand as much as she did!

    Liked by 1 person

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