but why?

  • Fish: where did the moon go?
  • Me: it’s still there you just can’t see it because it’s a new moon.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because the moon moves around the earth and sometimes the earth gets in the way of the sun and the moon so then you can’t see the moon.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because I said so.
  • Me: don’t go outside.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because it’s wet outside and you have socks on.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because it was raining earlier.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because the clouds were too heavy with precipitation and it happened to be over us when it happened.
  • Fish: but why
  • Me: because I said so.

Yup, you guessed it… the cupcake house has officially entered the “but why” phase of toddlerhood! At first it was really cute and even a little funny. But when you hear it a million times a day it becomes a little less cute and a whole lot more annoying.

I try not to use the “because I said so” line, though as you can see it’s how our conversation tend to end before they move onto the next set of why dialogues. The first time he asks why I try give him the proper answers in hopes that his subconscious is absorbing the information and that he’ll be a little Einstein one day (wishful thinking I’m sure) and sometimes after the second “but why” you can say “I don’t know” or “why?” then he’ll actually give you an answer, usually along the lines of “the moon is sleeping” and “the sky is crying”.

But then again I guess we never grow out of the “but why” phase do we? As adult we often bring up the question when life is not falling into place. Why am I struggling? Why did I lose my job? Why did my relationship fail? Why, why, why, why? As an adult, we are looking for the same answers as our children. We are looking for answers to things we don’t know or understand, to gain new knowledge about the unknown and sometimes reassurance that we are not alone.

When our patients run out and we are about to get annoyed with the 20th “why”, we must remind ourselves how we feel when we ask “Why” and nobody replies….. An answer brings knowledge, peace and joy. When we eventually get our answer to our “Why”, the answer overflows with love and gives us the confidence and courage to push ahead.  An answer can move adults and children from Why to WOW!!

And if you’re REALLY stuck on an answer and don’t want to answer with the easy “because” then why not have a look at this nifty site: butwhy.com.au I actually learned a whole lot browsing through it earlier


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