Friday, July 18, 2008


In the car yesterday, Brian and I seemed to reenact a scene from this radio broadcast. I had to share it.

Brian started off by asking us, "It's illegal to crash your car into a house, right?"

"Yes" I answered, confused as to where this was headed. Was he wondering why I, the driver, haven't yet crashed into a house? I know both the boys have been brainwashed by Rob to think he's the better driver.

Then Brian asked, "Can you make things that are legal illegal?"

"Yes, that's what our legislators do", I told him, knowing he'd remember our talks about why it's important to be involved with our legislator.

He then announced, "When I grow up I'm going to make it illegal to lose your husband".

I took a moment to decipher the kid vocabulary and asked "Do you mean you want to make it illegal for people to get divorced?"


We've recently had a divorce in the family and some of their schoolmates have parents separating at the moment too. I knew it was something on the mind, and we've been working hard to explain that that won't happen to their family. While other couples may make the same promises that their daddy and papa made, and the promises weren't kept for some reason or another, we want it clear to them that they can count on our promises being kept.

So, curious if he was worrying about us I asked, "Why, bub?."

"Because when you are divorced it breaks up a home."

I'm sure no one but Rob and I can be as struck by their insights :-). They are, of course, the most intelligent, most adorable children in the entire world, and anyone who disagrees is a liar, a filthy no-good liar. But come on, making an analogy with crashing a car into a home? That's pretty clever for a newly-6-year-old, if I do say so myself.

What made me laugh though was that he may well get his wish. We will all soon be headed to California, and his parents will make those promises, once again, on our 13 anniversary. This time it will be legal; this time they will be able to see us promise and not just see the photographs from so long ago. But here's the kicker: when we all come back to Utah, there will be no legal way to divorce.

If there's one good thing about this political situation it will be, when we come back to this state with its higher than average divorce rate, telling our sons they are some of the few children here, in the world even, with parents who are undivorcible, in more ways than one.


Java said...

This is precious. Yes, Brian is quite precocious and insightful. I didn't realize it will be impossible for you to divorce after you're legally married. Is that because Utah doesn't recognize your marriage?
I listened to the entire hour of that radio show you linked to. I like This American Life. Ira Glass' voice is so soothing to me. That episode was a heartstring puller, even more to your family I'm sure. But I loved Dan Savage's story about his son. Also extremely precious.
Once when I was about the same age as your boys I had a dream that my parents separated. Not sure if I realized there was such a thing as a divorce, per se, but in the dream my father left us. I remember hiding behind a big rock. Has nothing to do with Daddy leaving, but there was a really big rock in the yard in my dream. Anyway, the dream scared me very much and I woke up crying. Mama came in to check on me, and when I told her my dream, she said that would never happen. She and Daddy would always be together. 2 years later they divorced. The break-up of the home hurt a lot. I doubt I would have remembered the dream if Mama's promise to me had not been broken.
That presages nothing about your marriage, dear Scot!! Congratulations and cheers to all the long years of togetherness for you two! :)

Scot said...

"Is that because Utah doesn't recognize your marriage?"

Yep. Technically we could get divorced, if we moved to California and established residency. But if they amend the constitution, they may not be able to, as I understand it, take rights away from the couples already married. Who knows what happens to divorcing couples then.

"I doubt I would have remembered the dream if Mama's promise to me had not been broken. "

That's a tough, sad story Java.

This is what always strikes me: how can 2-years change all that? Do you think your parents believed that a divorce could never be their choice or were they promising for your sake? It literally sounds impossible to my perspective, but does every couple feel that way?

Scot said...

Oh and I commented just before I needed to leave the home and forgot to say: didn't you just love the monkey tissue box story too? I love This American Life.