When I found out I was pregnant, I was convinced I was having a girl. My best friend was convinced I have having a girl. Just about everyone was thinking girl. I had always imagined myself with a daughter first. I was about 13 weeks along when we had an ultrasound done and I jokingly asked the tech for a guess on the baby’s sex. Since 13 weeks is pretty early to be making a determination, she said, “Don’t go paint the nursery blue just yet, but I’d say it’s a boy.” She got the perfect between-the-legs shot, and suddenly I knew that she certainly appeared to be correct. I couldn’t stop saying, “It’s a boy???” over and over again to Mike. How could I have been so wrong? Mike, on the other hand, was grinning ear to ear.
It’s not that I didn’t want a boy, it’s more that I was so shocked….and I was scared. I wasn’t scared because I didn’t know what to expect, I was scared because I knew exactly what to expect. Being the oldest in a house full of boys had given me years of practice. As the days of my pregnancy went on, I slowly warmed up to the idea. Mike told me he couldn’t wait to see me as a “boy mom,” and really, there is sort of an unofficial club. Sometimes another boy momma can just look at you in a way that says, “I understand,” and you know she really does. Fast forward to the day he was born, and I was totally, 100% smitten. The cliche that little boys have their mommas’ hearts in a very special way is definitely true.
If you’ve raised a son, you know that there are so many masculine things just born into them. A few months ago, we drove by a lumber truck. I hardly noticed it until I heard Lincoln in the back seat saying, “Wowwwwww,” as he clapped and pointed towards the truck. Really? A lumber truck caused that much excitement? We don’t own motorcycles and have never even mentioned that word around him, yet he imitates the loud engine sound and smiles as one drives by. He’s just so boyish. I understand that there are always going to be exceptions to the rules, and there are certainly boys who aren’t as into traditional boy things and girls who aren’t into baby dolls and Barbies, but it’s been obvious to us for months now that we have a very traditional little boy. If it is loud, he’s in love. If he can throw it, he’s all about it.
This adventure into toddlerhood with a boy has been an interesting one for me as a mom. He’s so rough; Not even his hugs and kisses are gentle. He runs towards the dirt and enthusiastically throws it in the air and rubs it on his head. He beats everything in sight with his drum sticks. He taps out the beat to a song on his knees, which are quite frequently skinned from a recent fall. He feels that every tall object is just a challenge that needs to be climbed and conquered. He randomly growls at people and will do his dinosaur roar for you in a heartbeat. In addition to all of those things, his little voice calling for me is the first thing I hear every morning. He wants to be held and cuddled after a bad fall. Sometimes I catch him just looking my direction and smiling at me. Usually once a day he will run and jump into my lap, hold my face in his hands and say, “Momma,” in a way that can melt my heart in a second. All of those things have made me treasure who he is becoming, dirt and all, and even though I’m the girl who could only imagine myself as the mom to a little girl, I find myself secretly loving boyhood.
That’s not to say that my heart doesn’t sometimes ache for a little girl, because it does. Let’s be honest, boyhood is as crazy as it is sweet. There are days that I feel like I just cannot keep up with him and wonder how I will ever survive these years. Yesterday, in fact. Most days, I am totally and utterly exhausted from chasing him and from the constant battle of the wills that comes with having a strong-willed child, no matter if it’s a boy or girl. So I’m not going to lie and tell you that I love every minute of being a mom to this crazy child, because you’d have to be loony to enjoy every minute of being a mom. But I do find myself with smiles that come in between the moments of frustration and chaos, and I’ve learned to find happiness in the climb, run, jump, yell, repeat cycle that fills my days with Lincoln.