My blog pal over at Circles in the Sand wrote a charming little post this week about having boys. It made me smile because she’s right, it doesn’t matter how much you try to produce a child without conforming to stereotypical behaviour, nature always wins out.
Boys are mental. I never appreciated until I had a small one in the house, how much energy they use and how much food they consume. I never think of mine as being a particularly gung-ho kind of a boy, yet he still insists on talking, singing, playing, arguing, and running from dawn to dusk, permanently on the move, climbing, jumping, and using me as a wrestling dummy. The sheer exhaustion caused by bringing up a boy, any boy, should not be underestimated.
Of course when they hit puberty and retire to their rooms with porn, acne and terrible smelling clothes, we mothers of sons will get a bit of a break. Whilst they sit languishing over computer games and rap music or alternatively run about on a field with a ball of some description, we will be gazing from the sidelines and merely be in charge of providing food (this is my vision; don’t ruin it for me). The mothers of girls, on the other hand, will be dealing with horrid younger versions of themselves getting into trouble at every given opportunity whilst being overly emotional and completely foul at the same time. All those years drinking coffee and watching their little girls strut about in dressing up clothes or sitting doing ‘colouring in’ will fade into a grey memory as they attempt to dissuade them from older men with cars and clothes small enough to fit a Barbie doll.
But, in the spirit of ‘enjoy it while you can’ I try not to imagine those heady days when I might not claw my way to 7pm and a bottle of wine after an afternoon spent throwing, catching, pretending to sleep/eat/fly/drive/be at school/belly dance etc. etc. I try not to yearn for a time when I don’t have to stick the TV on just to have a conversation that doesn’t involve the words ‘Why?’ or ‘Because’ or ‘be careful‘ or ‘mind my hair/sofa/your fingers’, or ‘get down/sit down’ (delete as appropriate).
And right now, my son really is very enjoyable. Despite being relentless. So I really do have a lot of love for him, and as I watch him grow from a baby to a little man I am so glad to be part of this series of special moments. And special they are. For example, this morning, at breakfast, he gazed up at me and said in his very serious voice, “Mummy, it would be very sad if everyone in the house died. Then I would be all alone.” (I’m not sure where his current obsession with death came from but it seems he has some issues to work out)
“Yes, that would be very sad,” I replied. “But it’s not going to happen, so you don’t need to worry about it.”
“Mummy, I don’t want to die,” he said, “you have to look after me very well so I don’t.”
I gathered him up in my arms and got the best little boy cuddle ever. “Of course I will look after you, you are my number one boy, and I will always look after you.” I replied, with a little catch in my throat. I kissed his head and held on as tight as I could to the moment, hoping he could feel how much I loved him.
Then my darling little boy looked me in the eye, gave me a smacker on the lips, smiled, and farted.