Posted in Mommyhood

Unwed Marys and Modesty

Last Updated on December 27, 2020 by World's Okayest Mom

My Girl: (gasps) “But I’m a virgin!”

My Girl has been walking around the house for weeks doing this. She gasps in surprise and says (very sincerely, I might add) “But I’m a virgin!”

Did I mention she’s Mary in the church Christmas program? Perhaps I should have led with that.

I’ve never been so happy to have COVID cancel something as I was this holiday season. My Girl’s Christmas Program was cancelled.

That’s not true. I wasn’t happy to see the program cancelled. But I was happy to avoid the conversation I was sure to happen eventually – “Momma, what’s a virgin?”

Tough and Truthful Conversations

So I’m not good with these hard conversations (see when I just kept telling My Girl to ask her father here). I know avoidance isn’t the answer, but exactly how do you explain “virgin” to a 9-year-old with modesty issues, the love language of physical touch and an early propensity to be boy crazy?

That’s not rhetorical. Feel free to comment below if you have ideas.

The Sister’s Honesty

I’m not like The Sister with her honesty and anatomically-correct vocabulary. Maybe it’s because she has four children, which means four times the questions. (And yes, it’s true… I’ve yet to mention The Sister without also mentioning that she has four kids; I can’t help it… it blows my mind! She’s basically a super hero.) Maybe it’s because the oldest of her kiddos is bordering on teenager-dom.

Either way, her youngest, the heart-wrenchingly cute, four-year-old Boo knows more about the female body that My Girl does at age 9.

How do I know this?

Because The Sister sent me the following picture of Boo at preschool.

Boo's Modesty
See that sweet, sad face? That’s the face of a little girl who didn’t get to finish putting the private parts on her monster.

She is pouting because the teacher made her stop drawing her monster before it was complete.

It’s missing its vagina. Her words not mine.

I’m blushing over that fact that I just wrote vagina and am posting it on the internet. Boo, on the other hand, stood up in class and cried out: “But my monster is missing its vagina!” There may or may not have been descriptive hand motions included with this outburst.

Who am I kidding? There were definitely descriptive hand motions.

So while I envy The Sister’s ability to be honest and open with her children, I hate to admit that I’m more like Chandler – just walk away when the conversation gets tough.

Chandler’s Avoidance

Recently, when Chandler tucked Little LuLu into bed for the night, she accidentally bumped… um… him.

Little LuLu: “Dada… Why you got a little stick in your pocket?”

Chandler, in his infinite daddy wisdom, just walked out of the room. I can’t say that was the most educational approach, but in all honesty, it’s probably the one I would have gone with too.

It was also his second response when he went back in to finally say goodnight.

Little Lulu: “Dada… Did you get that stick out of your butt yet?”

At that point, he left the room, only to fall to the floor laughing.

So I can agree with Chandler… At times the best answer to difficult questions is ignoring them. That’s the method I use when My Girl consistently sings a specific Hamilton lyric incorrectly.

She sings A Winter’s Ball like this: “Now Hamilton’s skill with the quill is undeniable/But what do we have in common/We’re reliable with the/Ladies/There are so many to devour/Ladies/Looks, proximity to power.”

Her mistake is in her choice of the word “devour.” The brilliant Lin Manual-Miranda actually uses the word “deflower.”

But when I went to correct My Girl, I had second thoughts.

My Girl: “It’s not devour? Then what is it?”

Me:

Surprisingly, I couldn’t think of a better alternative. I wasn’t about to explain why Hamilton would want to “deflower” a lady during their courtship. On second thought, devour works just fine, especially because she thinks in literal animal terms. Plus, kudos to My Girl for keeping with the rhyming integrity of the song.

Modesty in Want

I just hate to give My Girl more information than she already has. I worry about the combination of that knowledge with her already flagrant disregard for anything resembling modesty.

I’m sure modesty is something that will come with maturity. Let me rephrase that: I hope modesty is something that will come with maturity.

As of right now, My Girl is very, very immature.

If I had a dime every time I woke My Girl up and found her naked under the covers… Well, to quote Maren Morris, I’d be sitting on a big ass pile of dimes.

Yes, she is naturally a furnace who runs around in shorts and short sleeves even in the winter. And yes, the air conditioning doesn’t quite bring the temperature down in her room on hot summer nights. Even so, I can’t stress to her enough the importance to keeping some stitch of clothing on while sleeping.

But the reason I remain fairly confident that modesty will come is because her best buds are not much better. If you recall the terrible night of My Girl’s sleepover (memory refresher here), My Girl was not the only one who didn’t hear the implied instructions of going into a private room when I directed the girls to change into their pajamas. Everywhere The Husband tried to go (the great room, the living room, the upstairs bedrooms, and yes, even, the actual steps) there was a different naked child happily preparing for her bedtime routine.

So it’s not just My Girl. Either that, or my friends and I are raising the new generation of nudists.

Proud (Virgin) Mary

That’s brings me back to my 9YO who was consistently practicing her Christmas program lines around the house.

(Gasp) “But I’m a virgin!”

My Girl Mary
My Girl as a Proud Mary. Proud and Curious Mary.

I just kept waiting for the inevitable. The question that was bound to come.

“Momma, what is a virgin?”

It wouldn’t be the first time she asked me that. The first time was this fall when we watched Hocus Pocus. Curse you, Bette Midler. I was tortured over the is she ready/is she not ready question in regards to watching the movie. But I was more worried about the witches and zombies disrupting her beauty sleep than the question of why Max was able to light the black candle and bring the Sanderson Sisters back to life.

“Momma, what’s a virgin?”

At that point, I was unable to foresee her starring role in the Christmas program, so I said the first thing that popped into my head. “It’s a young boy.”

Case closed. Curiosity satisfied, since Max was, indeed, a young boy.

And then came December and her Mary lines.

So I waited. Every time we practiced her lines, I held my breath, waiting for the question.

But it never came. Maybe My Girl isn’t as curious as I thought.

The question never came but the cancellation did. I finally released that held breath and was slightly relieved we didn’t have to listen to My Girl’s practicing any more.

As a replacement to the program at church, Monica and I planned a neighborhood, small, outdoor program – with the help of some neighbors and Phoebe.

My Girl resumed her role of Mary; Jane was an angel; and Little LuLu was the perfect sheep keeping watch at night. I wrote a quick script for the program.

Obviously, I removed the troublesome line.

Instead, My Girl was scripted to say to Jane: “How can this be? I’m not married.”

What did My Girl say when practicing her lines throughout the house??? (Gasp) “But I’m a virgin!”

Share your own imperfections.