I'm the kind of person who skips to the conversation when reading a book.
“Mom, I’m going to go in Lexie’s house,” Hannah said. She had burst in the door yesterday afternoon with this “news”. It was a cool but sunny Sunday, and she had been rollerblading up and down our street with the little girl who lives across from us.
“Excuse me?” I asked.
“I’m going in Lexie’s house,” she said again. “Her grandma told me to tell you.”
“Excuse me?” I said again, hoping she would catch my hint.
She looked perplexed. “I’m going in Lexie’s house,” she said for the third time.
“Is that a statement or a question?” I asked her.
“I’m telling you,” she said, so matter-of-factly that I knew she wasn’t seeing any problem here.
“I think what you’re trying to say is, ‘Mom, Dad, is it okay if I go in Lexie’s house?'”
“Yeah, that,” she said.
“No, say it,” I told her, and she rolled her eyes a little and giggled. Parents can be so silly.
“Can I go in Lexie’s house?” she asked, and almost headed for the door without waiting for an answer. I grabbed her hand.
“Sure,” I answered, sweetly, smiling, like the previous conversation hadn’t happened. “I’m so glad you came in to ask that.”
She giggled again. Bobby was sitting on the couch next to me for all this. “Let’s practice,” he said. “You go outside, and come in again, and we’ll do the whole thing right.”
Hannah looked a little mortified. How would she explain going in and out to Lexie who was waiting across the street? Bobby modified his request, “Just go out of the room and come back in.”
Hannah giggled as she bounced out and bounced back in. I really think she has some Tigger-genes in there somewhere. “Can I go play in Lexie’s house?” she asked.
“Is it okay with her grandma?” I asked.
“Yes,” Lexie answered with great confidence. She knew that to be true because Lexie’s grandma had been the one to tell Hannah to come over and talk to us.
“I think that would be fine, then,” I answered.
“And thanks for asking, and letting us know where you’ll be,” Bobby said. “If we looked out the window, and didn’t see you and Lexie rollerblading, we would worry.”
Hannah nodded her head. She understood what we were saying.
And off she went to play in her friend’s house.
We’ve gone through this scenario before, and will probably go through it again, but I don’t mind. We communicate, and that’s what important to me.