Heaven Is A Place On Earth
In a few weeks time we will be living with a 4-year-old little boy. I can't even fathom how this is possible as it feels like only yesterday he was born, but what I have come to realise recently is what inquisitive little nuggets 4-year-olds are. My son has always been a "why?" boy pretty much as soon as he could talk, but now we are talking serious life questions and I'm a little stumped at times as to how to answer them. If you want to feel like you have no brain cells definitely have a conversation with a 4-year-old and that should do the trick.
Most of our deep and meaningfuls are coming about by song lyrics. I have always listened intently to the words of songs and it would seem so does our son. With Magic FM as our driving soundtrack it has so far stirred questions about: Love: Mummy why does love change everything? Heaven: Mummy where is heaven? Is it a place on earth? Wealth: Mummy why can't he afford a big house and instead writes a song? Loss: Mummy why does he dance alone? His cognitive understanding has changed so much recently and I see him computing the answers. Digesting them, making sense of them and then throwing me a curve ball of a question to try and complete his understanding.
I totally get why The Secret Life of 4-Year-Olds chose this age as the focus of study. It is enlightening! It is also the age I have my first memories. I'm not sure if others are earlier but for me it is 4. Clear visual reminders of myself at this age of growing, starting school, getting a baby sister, the bedroom I shared with my two brothers, the role playing games and that sense of family.
Being a parent is a big responsibility from the day you take your little one home and yet you don't need any qualifications. You kind of get them along the way through learning on the job. But with this newfound philosophical questioning comes great responsibility. Working out the important life lessons. Teaching him about his soul and how good it is. Not to focus on the physical but to know the importance of what's inside counting more. Knowing my memories begin at this age enforces to me what an important age of cognitive awareness we are entering.
As he nears his 4th Birthday there is so much I want for my son. I want him to discover his passions, to find enjoyment from learning and discovering, to make friends that last to adulthood, to be self-confident, but most importantly, as cliche as it sounds, I want him to be happy. And so I will have these conversations with him, some deep, some hilarious, some fascinating and some important, but they ultimately all boil down to him having an understanding that no matter what, he can determine his happiness - as heaven is indeed a place on earth. We can and should all be as happy on Earth as I believe we all will be in the afterlife. I so hope my little philosophical nugget can continue to find happiness in this quagmire of an Earth we live in.