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I Swear I’m Smarter Than My First Grader

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I’ve got a bone to pick with parenting books. While parenting books will tell every parenting strategy, sleeping technique, teething remedy and pre-school philosophy, not one will forewarn you that as a mom you are expected to be a walking, talking know-it-all. Your kids will inundate you with questions that you’ll have no idea how to answer. So your kids will begin to think you’re a moron after you answer, “I have no idea,” for the 500th time.

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I’m flattered my kids expect me to have all the answers. But just because I’m a mom, doesn’t mean I know it all. I don’t. I don’t even know half of it all. My 7-year-old has no filter when it comes to questions. It’s like I’m raising a future interrogator whose favorite word is “Why?”

No one prepared me for this. Like the first time my son asked me why he has a penis and why I have a vagina, I was not prepared so I responded, “I don’t know.”

Or when he asked if birds sleep? Again, “I don’t know.” Or the hundreds of other questions he asks that I don’t know the answer to or that I don’t know how to answer. I swear I’m one “I don’t know” away from him questioning my intelligence.

So just to ensure that my kid actually thinks I’m smarter than he is, I’m facing his hard-to-answer questions head on. I may not know the answer or know the right way to answer, but I’m determined not to answer, “I don’t know.” Here goes:

Question: “Did the doctor make a door and take the baby out of your tummy?”

Answer: “Yes! The baby just rings a doorbell and out it comes.” I’d pretty much respond any way as long it spares me having to answer how that baby really got out of my tummy.

Question: “Why is that man on the corner standing there?”

Answer: “Pineapple!” From the back of the car, my son loves to ask questions about people I’ve never met like the guy on the corner, the kid skateboarding by or the woman waiting for the bus. I don’t know these people so I don’t know why they’re doing what they’re doing. Since the question is ridiculous, I’ve come up with ridiculous answers. It makes my son laugh and reminds him to think before he asks a question I could never possibly know the answer to.

Question: “What was I going to say?”

Answer: “You were going to say you love me.” As if I’m psychic, my kid will ask me what he was going to say. Since I’d have no way of knowing, I just assume he was going to say what I’d want him to say, that he loves me.

I just distract him with a shiny object, a treat or a pony or unicorn.

Question: “Is your face going to get old looking?”

Answer: “Not if a good surgeon has anything to do with it!” I always make myself laugh when I say this. I know my kid just wants to know that I’m always going to look the same. Truth be told, I do too!

Question: “Why do we sleep alone but you and dad sleep in the same bed?”

Answer: “Do you want some candy? Can I buy you a pony?” One of the few questions I’m not sure how to answer, so I just distract him with a shiny object, a treat or a pony or unicorn.

Question: “Are we going to be together when we die?”

Answer: “Absolutely.” This question freaks me out, mainly because it’s terrifying and sad and I don’t really know how to answer without worrying my kid. Even if it’s just in memories, we will always be together. So technically, I’m not lying.

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And the most difficult question my kid asks me:

Question: “Where’s my other shoe?”

Answer: “Right where you left it.” And yes, I do know where the shoe is because I have Mom G.P.S., which allows me to know the exact longitude and latitude of every item my children have ever touched, thought about or wanted. I just want him to know where his other shoe is. So I’m not telling.

Now, what are the most difficult questions your kids ask you and how do you answer? Silly or serious, I want to know.

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