Scene: Walking back from Peninsula Park Block Party. Sounds of the band playing “Billie Jean” in the background.
Me: It sounds like a Michael Jackson Tribute tonight.
Thomas: Why is it a Michael Jackson tribute?
M: Because they are playing lots of Michael Jackson songs.
T: Why are they Michael Jackson songs?
M: Because Michael Jackson used to sing them.
T: Why does Michael Jackson not sing them anymore?
M: ….because Michael Jackson is not around anymore.
T: Why is Michael Jackson not around anymore?
M:… ummm… (thinking I should just be honest) because he died.
T: Where did he die?
K: (Thanks for jumping in) In California.
T: Why did he die?
M: Because his heart stopped.
T: Why did his heart stop?
M: Because he was sick.
T: Why was he sick?
K: Because he was older.
M: No one really knows.
T: So when you are sick, then you die?
M: Sometimes. Not very often…
T: Only Michael Jackson dies when he’s sick, right Mum? No one else.
M: Look! We’re home!
Of course now I am worried that the next time one of us gets sick, Thomas will assume one of us will die..or not. Apparently only Michael Jackson dies.
Can anyone recommend a good resource that provides answers to tough questions from four year olds? I feel like any day now I’m going to say the wrong thing and mess him up for life.