Lately I have had a number of people ask my most dreaded question. I dread it so much that I always have my answers planned in advance. The question is ‘So, are you going to try for a girl?’.
Yes, I have all boys. No, it is not the way I envisioned motherhood. Yes, I am happy and no, I am not looking for an opportunity to become a human incubator again. Ok, those are not my answers but sometimes I wish I could say them. The question for me borders on irritation to simple frustration.
The fact of the matter is I grew up believing I would one day have a little girl to raise. I looked forward to the bows and ribbons. I thought that painting nails and learning about make up would be a fun event in our house. I also figured that a boy would fit into the equation…somewhere. Never in my thoughts did I think I would have only boys. To say the least, it has been sobering. Raising boys is completely different from girls. And by different I do not mean that they tend to laugh at obscure body noises or make anything into a weapon!
With three boys in different stages of live, they are all unique and wonderful. Yet it is with Isaiah that I am learning the most. He thinks, he ponders and he worries more than he should. He feels deeply and emotions come freely for him. He also loves to be his daddy’s shadow. Mention camping, building or fishing and he is at the door in no time ready to head out on another adventure. Almost 6 and he is like a little man taking off into the unknown. He is full of excitement as he experiences the mystery. He is also pulling away from me. This has been hard to except. It has been a slow progression for about 2 years (one that Joel is beginning now). I spent many a night crying about it.
Just to be clear, it isn’t that he is not wanting hugs or kisses or that he doesn’t like me. It is completely different and yet completely ok. As my boys grow older I want them to learn to stand on their own feet. Sometimes literally (like learning how to clean a bathroom and do their own laundry) but also spiritually. The Bible says that a man will leave his parents and marry a wife. Did you catch that, the man leaves. I want my sons to grow up not depending so much on me that the leaving part is hard. Well, I hope it is a little hard! :)
Heath’s mom has been a wonderful example of this to me. Now, if you ask Heath, his mom is a saint. She is an amazing woman who instilled a lot of great qualities into him. Yet, she let him go. I am sure it hurt at times as she watched her little boy grow into a young man and realize that she was simply the starting point for his dreams. There were dreams and goals he would achieve on his own, without her guidance or wisdom. She let him walk down an aisle (with eyes filled with tears I am sure) and marry into my family. She accepted me as a daughter. Even now, she lets him go. Let’s him think, ponder and worry.
The fact is that no, we will not try for a girl or a boy. And I am coming to grips with this more and more each day. It is hard to think of being a mom without a little girl bopping along side me. And yet, I realize that I have three guys in my house that need me. They need me to let go sometimes, let them test their own wings. I hope they always feel like home was a haven, shelter from the storm. I pray they know that God is our Rock, on Him our faith and trust is built. I want them to know that I am happy to be their mom, thrilled that God gave them all to me. Girl or no girl, they are precious treasures that I would not trade or give back. And I am happy to let them go, find their new mysteries and explore the unknowns.