It is such a simple knowledge, and yet I find that it's the hardest to rely on as a parent. To drown out all the noise, the opinions, the well-meaning advice, the not-so-well-meaning judgment, the guilt, and to just look and listen to my little person and trust that what I feel in my gut is right.
Your daughters believe you when you say that there are no boys out there good enough for them. Sure, a woman doesn't need a man to survive, but let's not raise her thinking that not only does she not need them, but that there actually aren't any good ones.
I remember the day you were both born like it was yesterday. I remember the feeling of overwhelming joy colliding with fear all at once. I remember the sound of your first cry and the feeling of your skin against mine for the first time, and thinking I am now a mother.
I hope that I am wrinkled and stooped and able to meet my grandchildren. I hope to tell them about their father, my now baby boy and my then-grown son. I hope to tell them about how brave he has always been.
I have often thought to myself that if I ever have a daughter, I would really have to watch how much I complain about my body. The last thing I would want is for her to grow up with a warped body image. I never once thought about what it could be doing to my boys.
Who wouldn't love to be swooped up and carried? So, I indulge Harrison's requests to be picked up, even when I would really like to be carried myself. Isn't that the ideal metaphor for parenting, really? We do things for our children that no one does for us anymore.
I can only imagine what she was thinking as she danced with her son on his wedding day. Probably back to the long days when she lived on little sleep, wore her hair pulled back too often and changed diapers tirelessly.
My favorite part is a little over a minute in, when the boy in the yellow shirt realizes that his interpretation of #LikeAGirl insulted girls, including possibly, his own sister. I love this ad so very much. However, as a boy mom, I just have to say... what about the boys?
This week, one of my 5-year-old twin boys and I sat down to do arts and crafts. (He actually mispronounces this activity as "arts and craps," and I'm perfectly OK with this pronunciation, as it pretty much conveys how I feel about it).
I want you both to know that by making that decision to adopt me three decades ago, Grandma and Grandpa truly changed my life. In a matter of a year, I went from being an orphan to becoming someone's daughter.
I was once the mother of babies who squirmed to be out of my arms and let down, who then grew into children who would wiggle free of my hands impatient to run in the park, and then zoomed into teens who began taking phones into their rooms to talk privately.
I pointed to a bottle with red and green sparkles that reminded me of Christmas and another one with silver sparkles that seemed a good choice for New Year's Eve. "No. This one," he said, sidestepping my choices and picking the sparkly pink. I threw it in my cart.
It would be awfully nice if Grandma didn't have to ask for a towel before she dared sit down on a seat, and if I didn't have to worry about burning my legs on the exposed seat-warmer wires. But then I think about all of the things I would have to give up if I got a new car.
Being born with a penis does not predispose anyone to being the kind of person who will bully or hurt others. Boys may be more likely to engage in physical play and want hands on activities, but there's no connection between being kinesthetically oriented and intentionally damaging others.
My oldest boy is turning 5 soon. My youngest boy just turned 1. Between them I am sure that I could solve the energy crisis, if only I could capture the intense amount of vigor that zings and swirls around them all day (and night) long.
My middle son is the Recorder. He records unusual sightings, like a bear peeing or a running cantaloupe (turned out to be an antelope.) He's responsible for writing down shopping lists, fast food orders and game scores. His creative abbreviations like J.C. (just ketchup) keep us laughing.