The moment we arrived for our play date with Julianna’s bestie and her siblings, my boys made a beeline for the box by the living room wall.
It had badminton rackets in it.
“Uh,” I said to Bestie’s mother, as the rackets were passed around, “is that okay for inside?”
“Oh, I”m sure it’s fine,” she answered. “They haven’t really figured out how to use them yet, anyway.”
Two minutes later, Alex and Bestie’s big brother were engaged in a full-on racket-saber battle ranging all over the living room, kitchen, and entryway. And Michael, his short legs unable to keep up, was trailing behind them, whacking at thin air and anything else that happened to get in the way.
“Oh,” said Bestie’s mother, as she moved in. “That’s so funny that it didn’t occur to me. I guess you have a house full of boys, don’t you?”
Boys are just different.
This is very, very clear to me these days. I grew up in a family of girls. Most of us weren’t particularly girly girls, and yet I was wholly and woefully unprepared for the energy and destructive capability that is a house full of boys. Yesterday, for instance, one boy pulled the seal off the van door and another dropped the food processor lid on the floor three times, until it broke. The third? The third entertained himself at Jazzercise by having some sort of back to back wrestling war with his friend in a tiny babysitting room filled with babies and toddlers. Oh yes, and someone parked a bicycle behind the van–AFTER I had already “cleared the baffles.” Fortunately, I knocked it over upon backing up instead of crushing it.
And that was a really, really good day. The classic story is how Alex popped my exercise ball…because he wanted to see what would happen if he poked it with a scissors.
Last night I had to practice my flute in my bedroom while the kids took their baths. I put it away and got them out of the tub, and Michael got mad at me because he wanted to leave it lying out so he could help me clean it. Riiiiiight. I know my bed is target practice for the long jump. And I’ll tell you what, I am not in the market for a U-shaped, solid silver handmade flute.
Boys are just different.
Several times in recent months, I’ve come across people who just don’t get that. I start talking about what’s different and they try to argue that girls also destroy things, that girls also make messes, that girls also pull things apart…but the thing is, I’ve seen those girls interact with my boys…and it is NOT the same. I’m sorry. It just isn’t.
I absolutely adore about 90% of being a mother of boys. And I love, love, love the fact that as a woman, I get to be intentional in forming the world view of those who will be the boyfriends, husbands and fathers of tomorrow.
But when I talk about the battles that aren’t worth fighting, this is why.
Because boys are just different.
Now, I know there are some parents of boys out there. I would just love to hear your best “boys are just different” stories! Especially the funny ones!