Last week, I accidentally knocked over my granddaughter’s lamp. After checking to make sure no one was hurt, I saw my granddaughter trying not to cry. You see, that lamp had belonged to her mother and I knew she really likes having it in her room. I knew how she felt. I really liked my doll too. How could I explain to her that although we love things, it is okay if they get broken? How to assure her that things are only things and not the primary part of life?
We talked about how it was most important that no one got hurt when the lamp fell. Then we talked about what she might want as a replacement, although I understood how much she liked the broken lamp. And then we talked about how many things may get broken but most of them will not be that important over the course of a lifetime. That is the conversation that satisfied the 9 year old. But this grandma knew that someday this conversation about broken things would be so much more complex. Because we all know that hearts, trust, hopes & dreams; these are the real things that can get broken. My doll, her lamp. That’s the easy stuff.