“So, there’s this boy. He kind of stole my heart. He calls me ‘Mom.’”
I grew up in a single-parent home that consisted of my mom and 3 sisters and was surrounded by a large extended family made up of mostly women and girls. Sure, I had my share of uncles and male cousins, but as I mentioned, women make up most of our family. I enjoyed doing girly things with my sisters during my younger years such as playing make-believe with dolls and giving each other makeovers. I loved not having a brother as I imagined he would tease my sisters and me, pull mean pranks on us and chase us around the house with bugs as some of my male cousins enjoyed doing.
I always envisioned having a girl someday. I loved all things – girls and fantasied about how I would put pretty ribbons and bows in my daughter’s hair, turn her into a little fashionista, and do girly things with her such as get manicures and visit spas when she got older. Shannon was going to be her name, I figured that much out by the time I was fifteen.
When I learned that I was pregnant, I was ecstatic that my dream of having a daughter was finally going to come true. My mom spent several months upon my sharing the wonderful news, knitting pink and pale yellow and green sweater sets for the granddaughter she was convinced she was going to have, while a few of my close friends and relatives shared dreams they had of my beautiful baby girl; we were all excited and anxious to meet Shannon.
I bet you can imagine the shock I experienced when I saw my baby’s sonogram and learned that I would be having a boy and not a girl. A boy? What the heck was I expected to do with a boy? I didn’t know or even enjoy anything boy-related. I hate assembling things, don’t understand anything about or even watch sports, and can’t tie a tie; what was I supposed to do with a boy?
I realized right there and then that I was extremely clueless about boys and was in for quite the “treat” now that I was going to be a mother to a boy. I sure was right about that as becoming a mother to a son has helped me make the following discoveries regarding boys:
Boys have a different level of energy that girls cannot compete with or relate to.
If Energizer ever needs to replace their mascot, my son would be their best bet as the boy keeps going and going and going. My son keeps me on my toes from the moment he gets up in the morning to the moment I tuck him into his bed at night. I don’t understand where he gets all his energy from or the fact that he never seems to tire; he’s always raring to go and can run circles around everyone I know. Maybe it’s a mix of testosterone and adrenaline, there has got to be some explanation for this. I knew I was in “trouble” while pregnant with him as he was an extremely vigorous kicker and seemed eager to make his presence known and felt.
If you have a boy, it’s necessary that you lose attachment to stuff if you want to maintain your sanity.
What is it about boys and their impulse to ruin or break stuff? I don’t care whether it’s the new pair of jeans that always manage to somehow get rips on their knees after the first wear, the Spiderman stickers that get plastered ALL OVER the house, the leather seats that look like they got into a fight with the family cat or the 4th button you discover missing from the remote control—I am slowly starting to suspect that boys don’t feel complete unless they ruin or break something. Having a boy has taught me to treat all material possessions for what they are; things that can be replaced, and that I shouldn’t allow myself to become attached to anything as anything I value can find a new home at the local landfill faster than I can lose pounds on the Master Cleanse.
Accidents are not accidents but rather daily occurrences as far as boys are concerned.
I find it amazing that my son’s head is still intact and in great working condition despite the number of times he has hit it on something—I guess this gives new meaning to hard-headed. Every day finds me dealing with or making a discovery of a new injury my son has experienced in the course of his day, whether it’s a scrape from a fall, a cut from a sharp object or a knot on his head or different body part. “Accidents” have become such a regular occurrence in his life that he hardly ever cries when he gets hurts, doesn’t even bother requesting a Band-Aid to cover his boo-boos anymore, and is on a first name basis with the school nurse. He wears his scars with pride, picks himself up after every fall and carries on doing the very thing that led to the injury in the first place. I have learned not to worry, if he has his limbs and all his body parts still connected to his body at the end of the day.
There’s really no such thing as peace and quiet when it comes to boys.
I don’t care how much you think you’ve perfected the “quiet” game; boys somehow manage to outwit those who suggest the game and have a way of creatively changing the rules to suit themselves. Let’s face it, boys love noise, love making noise, and find absolutely nothing wrong with noise—to them, it seems the louder things are, the more fun and enjoyable they are.
Boys can drive you up the wall with their noise and love to use noise as their little defense mechanism to get back at moms because they know that tapping, scratching, screeching, banging, vibrating noises, oh brother—all noises, get under our skin and piss us off big time. My son is not exempt from this and makes me sound like a broken record with every, “keep it down” directive that I utter. I guess it’s a case of, in-through-one-ear-and-out-the-other, when it comes to noise and boys!
I knew raising a son would come with some challenges just as much as I imagine raising a daughter would. My son is my greatest love and best friend, since having Solomon and getting to know him, I realize that I wouldn’t trade him for anything in this world; not even Shannon!
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