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What I Want You to Know

April 29, 2012

Dear Baby Boy,

I think I felt my heart stop when I found out you were going to be a boy. I guess I wasn’t expecting dinosaurs and airplanes and shades of blue. I guess I wasn’t expecting football and t-ball and the kind of grocery bill you will inevitably wrack up as a teenager. Honestly, baby, I guess I wasn’t expecting a son. We had a girl’s name picked out. When I closed my eyes and pictured your nursery, I saw soft flowers and pink circles and bows tied around the slats of a white crib. I guess I was expecting you to be a daughter.

But here I sit, 3 weeks after finding out you are going to be a boy, and I can’t picture it any differently. I can’t imagine you being anyone other than who you are. You are exactly who God intended you to be, and I’m embracing the trucks and the Legos and sports ball mobiles.

I have to be honest though, buddy, I’m a little nervous that you’re coming out a boy. I’m not nervous for me, I’m nervous for you. What do I know about little boys? Will I know how to connect with you? How to teach you and guide you and be a sounding board when you need me? Will I understand when boys need their space? When you’re having trouble with your friends? When to stop pressing for information about that girl I see you hanging around with? Will I know how to teach you compassion and mercy and humble confidence in a world that tells men they don’t need those qualities? I don’t know how to do that with a little boy. Hate to break it to you, love, but your mom is a girl.

If all else fails, at least I’m good at writing things down. I can write you letters and hang up lists in your room and leave you cards under your door (aren’t you SO excited for that?). Here are a few things I’m already thinking I’d like you to know, and Lord help me as I try to teach them to you:

1. Your life is not about you – Well, my little buddy, this one will be hard. It will be hard because your dad and I will want to make you the center of our universe. It will be a parent instinct to make your problems our problems and your successes our successes and your failures ours too. It will be tempting to let you feel like you’re the most important thing on this earth. But. (There is a but). Your life is not about you. Your life was not given to please only you. You are on borrowed time from God, and He intends to use you to bless and care for others. We’re going to have to learn about that together. We’re going to have to grow ourselves into a family of givers. You are meant to be a man who puts others first, who looks out for the shy kid, and who gives of his time and talents any way he can. I hope we teach you that.

2. The cool kids won’t always be so cool – perhaps this is the most nerve-wracking fear I have of being a mom to a boy. The friends. The peer influence. All the locker room, game time, jock stuff that, quite frankly, I don’t really approve of. I teach adolescents. I know how boys act toward one another. It kinda scares me, and I will always be nervous that you won’t be able to find your voice above the crowd’s. But, sweetie, you have one. I want you to know that you are your own man. You will live by your own values and convictions and truth. Whatever you end up loving, whoever you spend your time with, I want you to know how to be kind. I want you to know how to say no. I want you to know that the “pressure” from the cool guys is temporary. They are only cool so long as people let them be. I hope you will want to redefine cool.

3. Be kind – that’s it, that’s really it. Just be kind. There is nothing else more important.

4. Love who you want – I don’t know a lot about boys and their love lives. The few things I do know have come from my brother, your Uncle (I hope he’ll help you out). I know there is pressure and expectations for guys to feel certain ways toward girls, to act certain ways, etc. But, love is humble. Love is patient and gracious and sincere. Love is gentlemanly. And love also does not only exist between boys and girls. Love exists between everyone, and I hope you are never afraid of feeling love toward anyone. You can love whoever you want, so long as you treat that person with the grace and tenderness he or she deserves.

5. I’m not your friend – sorry, kiddo, I love you more than you’ll ever know, but I’m your mom. I’m not your bff. And my mommy hood will often conflict with what you want to do or the ways you want to behave. Just know that discipline is a form of love and boundaries are a form of mercy. Those two things come from moms and dads, not friends. And you’ve got a mom and a dad.

6. Mommy likes Legos too – I really love toys. I really love playing. I’m pretty creative and funny and can build great Lego castles. Will you play with me too? Will you know you can come to me? Will you trust me? Will you know I am here for you – to listen and hand hold and be patient? Will you understand that even though I’m a girl, I can do boy things too? I can kick the ball around and splash in the mud and get Play-Dough under my fingernails. I can do boy stuff. Trust me.

That’s my list for now, buddy. I promise I’ll write the others down when I think of them.

I love you already,

Mom

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. mom permalink
    April 29, 2012 9:28 pm

    And did you know little one, that your Mom went to Space Camp…not once, but twice? And her life dream was to live in a camper (seriously), so maybe, just maybe, she will take you camping? But, little one, your Mom is deathly afraid of spiders, so I think tents are out. And did you know, little one, that your Mom is the very best? You will find out.

  2. pastordt permalink
    April 30, 2012 12:40 am

    You will be a great boy-mom. Yes.You.Will. And you will not believe how much you will love him. It won’t always be easy. But it will always be good.

  3. Aunt Sally permalink
    April 30, 2012 8:52 am

    Welcome to my world! You will be an awesome mom and you will find that little boys have their own special charm. The best part is that they then grow up into very special big boys. Love you!

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