Monday, January 27, 2014

Being a Boy Mama

SIDENOTE: you know your Southern accent has gotten much, much worse than you had realized when, every time Katy Perry's "Dark Horse" comes blaring through the car stereo, and you enthusiastically belt it out along with her (duh)... you go: "So you wanna play with my jig... wait, what is a jig again? I'm getting old and uncool..."

No, I'm just a redneck. 

"Magic", not "Mahh jig". 

Every time, people. Every time. 


There is something special about being a boy mom. Granted, there is a lot of poop, fart jokes (right away), obsessions with peens from day 1, impatience, hair-pulling and crazy pent-up energy like you don't even know... But what you don't quite grasp ahead of time, which more than makes up for all the exhaustion, is the very real sense in which you are the first, great love of his life. 
Surrounded by my husband and my little men, I am wanted and adored more than ever before in my life. I feel guilty about how greedily I luxuriate in this fact. Last week, I received the first legit open-mouthed kiss of Henry's whole existence. It was slobbery and amazing. He grabbed me, got this crazy determined look in his eyes, went in for the kill (pulling my hair and rubbing his drooling, toothless mouth from side-to-side a few times over my entire face)... and pulled back with a half-shy, half-cocky smile of "Yeah, did ya like that?!"
 I look over at Jason occasionally with a half-apologetic smile as Henry is on one hip, blue eyes mooning at me besottedly, fat paws patting my cheeks with awkward affection, and Will is dangling from my various extremities, singing a made-up song that is usually along the lines of "I want to cuddle and kiss mamaaaaa!" Poor Jason. I would be happy with a whole litter of crazy boys, but someday I do hope we have a little baby girl, so just he can experience this special little baby romance for once, as I did with my Daddy. I adored the man. Conversely, my boys love their daddy, but I am enthroned Queen of their Hearts, for sure. 



The other night, Jason and I were chatting as our whole little family was squashed into the upstairs bathroom while the boys were getting bathed. 

Will was playing quietly and happily with his letters as we talked. He kept holding up letters and fact-checking - "K is for Kallah, right Mommy? That's for Mommy, right?!  W is for Will! J is for Jason! Right Daddy? Right!"... and so on. It was kind of exhausting. We have learned to usually just automatically affirm his fact-checking. "You are SO RIGHT, Will." And everyone is happy. 
So, we weren't paying much attention to Will's literary abilities. 
But as we were about to pull them out, I looked over Will's shoulder, and what I saw made me mouth tremble a little involuntarily and my throat feel funny. I grabbed Jason's sleeve and silently pointed when Will wasn't looking.
Mommy and Will, W and K, smashed together in a special place of their own. 
You could not have put them more closely together. 
It was the dearest and sincerest "Valentine" I have ever received. 
[Poor Jason... as you can barely see, his "J" is relegated to the corner. I am fairly certain he will get his recompense when they're a little older... they will want nothing more to do with me at some point, I am sure. Sooner than I'd like to imagine right now. The sad part about this baby-love is that it has a very short expiration date.]
I will cherish the memory of this stinky, messy, slobbery and sometimes-draining baby-boy-love long after they've abandoned me for twiggy little teenage girls with braces and sports bras. And sometimes, if I think about it long enough (like long enough to drag out a whole blog post)... I get to thinking: I really hope I am setting an appropriate example for them of the self-sacrificing, life-giving, peace-nurturing love of a good woman. Its so easy to get caught up in yourself, you know? This mama has this awesome series going where she challenges herself to stop with the self-hatred, obsession with imperfection, and over-all staring morbidly at your bellybutton. Its all too tempting to think you aren't hurting anyone but yourself by indulging in malcontent, especially when it comes to the way you look and feel about yourself... 
It does matter. Its a really intimidating and tear-inducing realization... but I am given daily evidence, from sloppy kisses and awkward little professions of undying love... that whether or not I set that example intentionally, I am their prototype. 
I do not take this lightly. But I need to be aware of it more.
True story: Will kept trying to bring his cars into our picture reel. He held up various players in front of the camera and babbled about them. 


Guess his love for me is rivaled by another love.

6 comments:

Marjorie said...

I was an all boy mom at one time and I have to say it was pretty cool belonging to a group like that ;) I wanted a little girl so badly, but you know what? The relationship isn't the same as with a little boy. Boys are "mama's boys" and my daughter is such a "daddy's girl." It took having a girl to realize how the love is different. There's something about oldest sons too. Can't put my finger on it, but it's special.

Jenny said...

Awwwww, ain't nothing better than baby romance. This post makes me want to go into the boy's rooms and kiss their sweet cheeks right now, even at grave risk of waking the beasts. I have loved loved loved seeing my husband with our new baby girl too, as he is clearly in the throes of baby romance with her.

Theresa said...

Ugly tears right now.. ugly tears. I can't wait to meet my baby boy!!!!!

PS - the bath tub pic of both boys is incredible!! I kind of look just like Henry when I try and roll out of bed.... It's a struggle.

Lauren Foster said...

how sweet! i grew up with all sisters and would love to be a momma to some baby boys one day...i think it's such a special relationship!

Catherine Pelicano said...

Honestly this is one of my most favorite pieces you've ever written:) xo

Jennifer S. said...

I really needed to read this. I don't know that I ever really thought of it in those terms-- me being the first great love of my son's life and how the example I set will influence the type of woman he will choose as his spouse someday. This is a really important reminder to keep me focused on those exhausting parenting days.

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