One of my favorite things about life is the fact that I bore two children who are talkers. We talk endlessly about everything from the meaning of life to manatees to the subtle nuances of a Sanford and Son ringtone. Lately? We talk about death.
Not my favorite subject, but a necessary one. Since my aunt's funeral my children have seen me in a different, more fragile light. Someones mom can actually die and this makes them both horrified and concerned. My son, my sensitive child, was most worried for a few days and asked me endlessly, "What would happen if Poppaw died?", "What would happen if Mommaw died?"
"What happens to us if you die?"
He's older so it's easier, I guess. I tell him there are plans in place. That mom has tons of insurance and that dad will be there, just like he's always been. That I'm not sick, I'm totally fine and the worst thing wrong with me is that I get stressed out and have way, way too much to do sometimes. I'm healthier than I've ever been in my entire adult life and that's a true fact. That he doesn't need to worry about me.
He doesn't care about money and he's never been one for logic, unfortunately. He likely counts Jason among those he's concerned about...Jason is part of the "us" because I take care of him too, in different ways. Even though the Boy Child doesn't say it, he just wants some kind of assurance that he'll always have his mom. That we'll always have our family.
I can't give that, and I understand that I can't. So I tell him instead that I'm going to make a CD for him to save for many, many years and one day he can be responsible for playing it at my funeral. It will have all my favorite songs and right smack in the middle will be "Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-a-Lot. You know. I like big butts. No question.
I made him promise that he would videotape the funeral and share the reactions that particular song elicited with whatever form of social media is popular at that time. That his dream of going viral would finally come true. He laughed and laughed and then said, almost sadly,
"No one would appreciate that like you mom."
But it makes the thought of being gone from the people I love the most just a little easier to bear.