I was trying to explain to our son Hank about why we couldn’t visit our favorite people right now. We had been on a walk around the neighborhood and were waving to those we would normally stop and visit with for a few minutes. Our 4 year old was curious why we couldn’t do what we always do.
I was thinking of something creative when Hank came up with an out of the blue solution. “Dad, he said, I know, there was a storm last night.”
Although I have no clue where that idea came from or what he meant, it helped me with my explanation.
Yes, Hank, there is sort of a storm going on. And what happens after a storm? “A rainbow?” he asked.
Our conversation went on for a few minutes and I went with that. If you look at what that metaphor is, it can be said that we are waiting for the rainbow and clear sunny skies after this storm we are in.
It is moments like that when I realize that I don’t have to be overly worried about coming up with the perfect way to get him or his two brothers to understand the things that honestly, I don’t fully comprehend myself. A simple metaphor can be just what helps to create a bridge between the world around us and a child’s understanding of it.