I was raised as a gal’s gal. In a family of two girls, my gentle father didn’t have much of a shot at perpetuating a rough and tumble boys’ world. I happily enjoyed a house filled with multiple cans of hairspray and thought the whole world watched Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman on Saturday nights. Wait, they didn’t??
You can imagine what a shock it was when I married my husband because he was a man. Who had been a boy. Who had been raised in a house full of boys. He enjoyed things like farting and then talking about his farts–at length. Whew, this was going to get interesting…
And then I had a boy. My very own male child. Sure I was nervous about my competence with a foreign gender, but let’s be honest, at first, except for the shooting pee, not that much is different. Things were okay.
Yet, while he’s only four and it’s not as though I’ve had a lifetime of raising a boy, some notable unique situations have come up.
Like the time he came to me and said, “Mommy, my penis hurts.” My husband was deep in the middle of an extended work meeting and “unavailable”. Excellent.
“What do you mean, your penis hurts?”, I flailed.
“It hurts.” Super, I was really getting somewhere now. As I mentally ran through treatment options ranging from various creams to ice packs, this was one of the times in my life I really wished I had my own penis–so I could know what the heck he was talking about. (To clarify: the other times I have wanted a penis were so I could experience perpetually avoiding ever throwing dirty clothes actually inside the laundry basket versus beside the laundry basket without the slightest sense of self-annoyance.)
Months later and no repeat incidents of achy penises, I thought perhaps we were in the clear. And then, he said it. The words my girlie-girl self had long feared ever since my little dude learned what the Wii was.
“Mommy, you wanna play Mario Kart with me?” Craaaaappp…..
We never had video games in my house growing up. They were scary and weird to me. Moreover, I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THEM. To be clear, I do not like them. And I don’t want to play them.
“Uhh…sure, buddy? When were you thinking?”. I try, I really do.
“Monday!”, he brightly answered. We were in the clear! It was Tuesday, so surely he would forget in 6 days time…no worries.
Except…he didn’t forget. Monday, aka Doomsday arrived. Again, craaapppp….
Okay, I could do this right? I was semi-intelligent person. Pass me the remote; I could figure out how to drive a virtual car? I could not. The highlight of our Wii session was literally watching the secondhand of my watch tick by out of the corner of my eye, praying for a miracle from God to somehow fast-forward time. It was going well.
I could have stealthily hid the spare Wii remote, formulated dramatic lies about how I wanted to catch up on laundry, or just flat-out broken his heart and said, “no more”, but…I love him.
And my son loves his Wii. He’s so excited about his new game and giggles with glee whenever it’s game time. So when he asked me a couple days later if he could “show me Lego Star Wars”? Okay, buddy, okay.
So I got on my big girl pants, stashed my watch out of sight, and settled in. And you know what? It was actually kind of fun. As video game compadres go, four year olds aren’t so bad. When I can’t figure out what the heck I’m supposed to be doing and make stupid mistakes, he doesn’t make fun of me–that much. When I give up and start to laugh because I’m so utterly lost? He laughs with me. And he’s pretty cute when he does it.
But even if I didn’t laugh–even if I hated it with every fiber of my being? I’d play the boy’s video games. I’d actually follow him to the ends of the earth and back. Because I love him.
Video game date in 5, little man.
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So sweet!!! You are such a great mama!!!
I don’t know about that, but I appreciate the vote of confidence!
He’s adorable and I wanna squeeze him!! And you!!
Teri, you always make me feel so loved!
Cynthia Gabriele Sprouts Consignment Boutique says
I have not had the actual experience of raising a “male”, though my nephews were at the house constantly & playing those games, not on a Wii though. It was fun to watch from a distance. They never asked their Aunt to play & probably for good reasons. They were content to have me baking homemade cookies in the kitchen. This always got glees of happiness from all the kiddies. Now with a grandson I am sure there will come a day when my lack of “BOY SKILLS” come out, isn’t that what Grampi is for? Oh, the fun I have to look forward to!
I think this is my problem, Cindy–I just need to bake cookies all the time and then I can avoid the Wii! 🙂
I too suck at video games. But is it weird that my husband grew up in a house of boys and I’m the one that talks about my farts?
Frugie, whatever you talk about is always loaded with class, farts included, I’m sure.
As opposed to my son who remarked,” Wow! You’re really bad at this!!”
Lovely post, Meredith!! <3
Ha! Sometimes I wish he would just say that and boot me from the game, Roshni! 😉
Aw! You’re such a good mom! As your son gets older, he will stop wanting to play with you, unless he wants to win. 🙂 Mine refuses to bowl on the Wi with me because that is the only sport I win. He’s always like, “let’s play [insert this extremely difficult sport that I have mastered and you will never understand] it’ll be fun. We have two different definitions of fun
Snorting. I am sure those days will be here all too soon. And amen to the different definitions of fun–we’ve got this, Courtney? 😉
Kathy at kissing the frog says
Yep, video games and talking about farts – if you can do those two things, you’re golden with boys.
So I can’t handle this, right Kathy?? Just say yes!
Yes, the entire world (including Uncle Perv and I) DID watch Dr. Quinn and that handsom hatchet throwing stallion, Sully, Saturday nights at 8p.m.
Bless you for confirming this–was starting to worry that my basic understanding of the world was off-kilter.