Thursday, January 22, 2009
Celebration of boys - for my boys
I was thinking of my boys this morning after recent conversations with two friends who had sons after two daughters. They were amazed at the differences between parenting boys and girls. As you know, I am the proud mom of two boys. Now, in my 13th year of being a boy's mom, I think I have enough experience to be able to offer them some advice, with some authority.
When I envisioned myself as a Mom, having boys never seemed to enter the picture. I grew up with a sister and my grandmother, my mom's friends all had girls... there were, in fact, very few boys ever around.
When my sister had her kids, the first was a boy. It was a novelty and we all fell in love, but I remember hoping the second was a girl. It wasn't.
When I was pregnant with my first, I had lots of girl names picked out, too few boy monikers. And, the boy names I did have were nixed by the hubby and I get his point in retrospect (Perry and Brent were two memorable ones.) R came to being with much fanfare and love. Almost three years later, J was born, another boy. I knew he was coming, having had an amnio. I remember calling for the results during a work trip to Albany and feeling a tinge of disappointment. This time, it was my sister's turn to be bummed as well. As I had morning sickness with J and not with R, she was convinced this meant it was a girl.
Now when the family gets together, it's a sea of testosterone... with just my sister and I in the female contingent.
But I love having boys, and could not imagine my life any different, these boys any less loved or wanted. For those who are uninitiated into the mom of boys club, here are some things to look forward to...
Since I have had my boys, I have done things I had never before done in my life, like play soccer and basketball, skateboard, watch horror movies, dig in the mud, climb trees, plan scavenger hunts and pirate parties and on and on.
Boys are fun, hardly ever moody. They let things roll of their back and are on to the next adventure with amazing speed and agility. Emotions seem to be in check, maybe too inwards sometimes for a mom who likes to talk things out. But they reveal themselves in a way that is never loud or distressing, but are whispered upon a nighttime tuck in moment, or when just lying on the couch watching a show you really would not have chosen yourself.
Boys in group are interesting to watch. Their camaraderie and friendship is so different than that of girls. They don't have to talk often, in fact they don't even have to greet each other. Somehow they fall together and end up having the best time with little forethought or planning.
It's puzzling to us moms, but let them take the lead as soon as they're able to talk on the phone themselves.
So, for all of us who had visions of braiding a little girls hair, buying pretty dresses and painting little nails, I say embrace the messy, insightful, comical, whirlwind reality of life with your boys.
I know I learned to, and I can't imagine my life as a mom any different.