Maybe I have scarred Laci. Sometimes I don't know how much "truth" to tell her. Sometimes I forget she is only 5 years old.
The other night she was listening to the radio at bedtime as she always does. I went in to check on her and she was crying and terrified. An Amber Alert was on the radio. I didn't hear the details so I simply explained that a child was lost and they put it on the radio so that everyone would look for her and protect her. I didn't want to scare her more but reminded her that that is why she needs to be careful when playing outside.
After she finally fell asleep, still scared, I looked at the details of the Amber Alert. A little girl was taken by her mother who recently lost custody. I didn't know how much to tell Laci. What a horrible situation. I know that a 5 year old can't understand why a little girl can't be with her mother.
Charlie said that the next morning, Laci talked to him about the Amber Alert. She knew the name, age and description of the little girl. She had heard and listened to the entire Amber Alert.
That night I read that they found the little girl in Louisville. Police had found her and brought her home to her dad. At bedtime, Laci asked if the little girl had been found. I simply said "Yes". I didn't know what to say when she asked "Who found her" and "Who took her". I told the truth. I explained that the police found her and it was her mother who had taken her. I went on to explain that we do not know why the little girl's mother had to take her and we do not know why the little girl's mother was not allowed to have her. We do not need to know. That mother loved her little girl but there was a reason that we do not know that she was not allowed to have her right now. I continued and reminded her that I loved her very much and will always take care of her and keep her safe.
A few minutes later, I went in there again and she was still upset. She told me that she is scared that when she grows up and has a child, the police will take her child away. My heart was breaking. I goofed and told her too much. I explained again that she is a very good, kind and loving person and she will be a very good, kind and loving mother and no one will ever take her child away from her. "How do you know, Mom?" "I know because I know you. I love you very much and I know that you will love and care for your child as much as I love and care for you. No one will ever take your children away."
I know that the conversations and harsh realities were too much for my 5 year old. I know she is almost 6 and an "old soul" almost 6 year old but she is still a little girl.