Thank Heaven for Little Boys

When the doctor yelled “Its a girl!” immediately after my first child was born nearly three years ago, I must admit that I breathed an immediate sigh of relief.  Deep down I really, really wanted a girl, and no matter how many more children we have at least I’ve got my girl.  Evie is my loyal companion; she is eager to help me in the kitchen, she loves putting on make-up and she wears dresses to soccer practice.  Such a little gem!

I grew up the oldest of five children – four girls and a boy. My parents welcomed the four girls in four years, and I was almost 7 by the time our little brother was born.  My sisters and I were so caught up in the world of girl (Barbies, My Little Pony, CareBears, Strawberry Shortcake) that we didn’t pay much attention to the kind of effort and time my parents spent raising a boy.

So, when the doctor proclaimed “Its a BOY!” the second time around my initial thought was “what do I do now??” I was so comfortable with raising a girl, and I just wasn’t sure how to raise a boy.  I try not to confine my children to gender stereotypes (I bought Evie little cars when she was a baby and Mack is welcome to play with our pink kitchen set), but I have found that there are noticeable differences between my boy and my girl.  Mack is thrilled to pick around a pile of dirt, while Evie is content to organize her baby doll collection.  They both like the kitchen set for different reasons: Evie likes baking pretend cookies, Mack just wants to demolish it.  Evie happily arranges Matchbox cars in neat rows, but Mack prefers throwing them clear across the room so they crash into the wall.

I recently realized why having a boy is so darn special for me.  As boys grow in to men they typically put up defenses, develop thick skins and puff out their chests.  As mothers of boys, we are so blessed to witness their sweet vulnerability and sensitivity before they cover it up in an effort to appear tough and manly.  Young boys cry to us when their feelings are hurt or when they feel frustrated, overwhelmed and sad; men don’t typically seek out comfort in such an honest and earnest manner.  A mother is likely the only witness to such emotional sincerity from her young boy.

My little boy wakes up every morning determined to conquer any challenge – crawling stairs at 7 months, walking at 9 months, climbing on furniture, destroying everything in his path.  He doesn’t take anything too seriously, and he manages to find the game in whatever comes his way. He is charming and adorable and exhausting.

Thank heaven for little boys!



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5 Comments for this entry

  1. Lynne says:

    I never knew your parents had that many kids. Thanks for letting me know what it’s like to have a boy. I find out Tuesday what we are having! I feel like it’s a boy but so not sure! I am not that exhausted with 3 little girls but I get scared that I will be with just 1 boy. My 3 little girls have a grace about them that when they wake up they have their routine of playing quietly in their room. Now, Brian grew up and was the same way- quiet boy. So we will see!

  2. Josepha Brusznicki says:

    Boys use their imaginations to build things. The cushions on the couch are boulders on a rocky path. Also, their pockets are full of treasures, special pebbles, buttons, pennies and an occasional dead brightly colored beetle. Their hearts are so big and minds are so curious to learn all of life’s secrets.

  3. Jamie says:

    this was great! exactly why I have always wanted a son!

  4. CeCe says:

    Thanks for this! I always thought I wanted a girl… until my son was born. He’s the most precious person ever to have been in my life and he’s likely going to be an only child. He is sweet and endearing, comforting me with a big hug when he knows I’m a little less than pleased at his wake of knocked down everything/destruction (toys, books, clothes, pantry food items, etc.). So while I definitely understand now that raising a boy has got to be very different than raising a girl, my son radiates his amazing personality and charms our entire family and most people who meet him. So yes, we are blessed… thank heavens for little boys! My son is definitely the best that’s ever happened to me. 🙂

  5. Julie says:

    Yes, yes, yes…thank heaven for “little boys”! Some of the sweetest words I’ve ever heard are, “well, he has outside plumbing”…and I instantly knew God had blessed us with a son! I am 2nd oldest of 5 children, 4 girls & a boy. My brother was born 6 years and 1 day later than myself. I adored him from day #1 and because I loved him so much, I always wondered what it would have been like to have an older brother. I knew all my life that when I married & decided to start a family, I wanted a boy first, that way if I ever had a little girl, she would be able to experience & know the joys of having a big brother! Thank you God for answering my prayers! THAT big brother has a little sister 🙂

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