People's Evidence A:
One of the very lovely teachers at Montessori asked me sotto voce the other day as I was collecting Cole and Imogen whether anyone in the family had recently acquired a tattoo. Say what?!? Turns out Immy had been practising harnessing her stage presence atop the climbing frame and belting out a song about tattooed torsos. Is it weird that that made me breathe a sigh of relief because I could explain that no, that was just one of our favourite bedtime songs, Groucho Marx's fabulous Lydia the Tattooed Lady (though I confess Kermit's version is my favourite!)? I'm not sure if the fact I lull my children to sleep with ditties of ink-rendered body modifications made her less or more concerned?
People's Evidence B:
The subect of Atticus came up the other day, and somehow we got to talking about him dying. *Why did baby Atticus die?* they wanted to know. Now, this is always a bit tricky for me - I want to be honest but at the same time, don't want to scare these little people with too much information (a common risk with me!) or make pregnancy or tiny babies inherently dangerous in their mind. So, I said simply that baby Atticus had a germ bug that was too powerful for a little baby to overcome, and so he died before he could get out of my tummy. Cole and Imogen were quiet for a few moments while they digested this.
Mama, I think you must be confused, Cole finally tells me.
Erm, what exactly do you mean love?
Mama, baby Atticus died because he swallowed a fly and was too little. The old lady didn't die until she swallowed a horse because she had a much bigger mouth.