I have mentally prepared myself for dozens of questions my children will most likely ask me one day.
Tonight as I was putting the girls to bed Reese said, "Mom, Kylie said that there were 2 bad guys who flew their planes into a building and like 1,000 people died."
I was trying to piece together what TV show or movie she was talking about when she went on to say, "And she said it really happened...in real life."
Ahhhh. September 11th.
I said, "Yes it did really happen. It was a terrible day. I remember it well."
Of course she wanted me to tell her what I remembered. So I told her how I was headed to work and heard on the radio about a plane flying into a big building. And when I got to work, the 2nd plane had flown into the building. I went on to tell her there were more than 2 bad guys and more than 2 planes and unfortunately a lot more than 1,000 people who died.
"Why did they fly the planes into the buildings? Didn't the bad people know that they would die?".
"Yes, they knew they were going to die. But their leaders had them believe that was an honorable and good thing to do."
Her white little eyebrows were drawn up in a furrow by this time as she tried to sort everything out. "But that doesn't make any sense. That they knew they were going to die? And did it anyway? I don't understand...", she said shaking her head.
We talked about it for a few more minutes. Even though it was a tragic event, I didn't want to end our discussion on a bad note. So I talked to her a little bit about the heroes of the day. Firemen, policemen, servicemen, those who took down the plane in Pennsylvania.
After we were finished I could tell she was still trying to process it all, "Wow. I just wanted to ask you to see if it really happened."
"Sadly, it did," I explained.
Then she looked up at me and said, "Why haven't you ever told me about it before?".
I said, "Well, it happened before you were born. But I will always remember it. I don't really have a reason for not telling you about it I guess."
In my mind, I knew there was more to that question. Because I want to protect you from all the bad things of this world, shield your kind heart, and savor your innocence.