Today, I learned from five year old E thought that the spots on my face are called prickles and that I was the only one of her friends that had prickles. I didn't have the heart to tell her that they were called freckles but had to at the end of the day when her mother said she wanted me to tell her the right word. E asked me today how a big person and a little kid could be friends. I thought that was a very mature and introspective question. I told her that we could be friends because we liked similar things and that we liked talking to each other. That seemed to satisfy her curiostiy and she moved on to something else. When I told her mother what she asked me, E looked at me with reproach - like I had betrayed a confidence. From now on, I will respect her privacy unless she tells me something weird or creepy which I will immediately report to her mother.
It reminded me of how I used to feel when I was a kid but didn't know the words for it. Little kids have NO privacy. It must be frustrating for them to always have people asking them how they feel, what they did in school that day, what their favorite color is or what they have to be when they grow up. It must also be frustrating not to be able to make your own choices and to constantly have someone telling you what to do. I remember how that feels.