“Mommy, why does that guy have a big butt?”
Yep, I said it… or I should say, my daughter said it. Last week I rushed home from work to take Mia to see the Easter Bunny. Like most days with a budding three-year-old, I had no idea what was in store for me. After spending a little one-on-one time with bunny, we grabbed a quick bite and decided to get some ice cream.
While eating our vanilla cone and discussing who Mia liked better, Miley Cyrus or Hannah Montana, she blurted out this question as a fairly large a man passed by, “Mommy, why does that guy have a big butt?”
What!!!!!! I nearly fell off the bench. Luckily the man was out of ear shot. (Well, I think he was.) Mia was by no means quiet about her question. I was mortified, and Mia could tell. She was upset and embarrassed.
I made an attempt to explain that people come in all shapes and sizes and everyone is different. I told her she could ask as many questions as she wants, but sometimes it’s better to wait until we are in private. Whether any of this reasoning sunk into a three-year-old brain, I’m not sure. On our drive home, my mind raced with images of myself in different situations with my child making inappropriate comments.
“Why are your teeth yellow?”
“Why does your belly hang over your pants?”
“Why does your hair stick up?”
Thinking about it in bed that night, I realized Mia was not trying to be mean or nasty. My little girl is simply beginning to notice the differences between people, and that’s okay… I think. I just need to come up with a method where she can ask these questions and not have us exiled from friends and family or banned from public spaces… especially those that are home to my favorite clothing stores.