I remember, vaguely, my reaction to the news that I was having a boy. A boy? I don't know what to do with a boy. After all, I'd never been a little boy. I understood things like butterflies and babydolls, not trucks and such.
I know; sexist, much? I blame the hormones.
But have a boy I did. My water broke the day I scheduled my induction.That first night with my baby boy was wonderful; my husband went home to tend to our dog and get some sleep, I stayed at the birthing center with that tiny boy, marveling at how well-behaved he was, how easy it was.
The next day was not so smooth. My hormones crashed. He discovered his voice. The birth center I chose specifically because it had no nursery and the baby would room in with me suddenly seemed a foolish choice. Bless the nurses who didn't question my tears, whisked my baby boy out of the room for "some tests" and told me to to get some rest. It was glorious.
And then we brought him home. Without supervision or anything. It was overwhelming, but we found our groove. I read the books and then threw the books at the wall when they didn't really help. We celebrated small milestones and I figured out how to parent a boy.
I rocked him for hours while listening to classic rock.
We tried new things together.
Despite my proclivity for hermit-like behavior, I stepped out of my comfort zone and found some friends for him.
We played with trucks. We played with blocks. We rolled a ball back and forth to each other, and when the ball would go astray, I would say "d'oh!" which inadvertantly taught him that a ball was called a d'oh. Sometimes, I wished the days away. I wished for the next day to start when it was really tough, I wished for the next stage of life when the stress got too much. The irony of course being that I wish I could get those days back, so I could hold them with both hands.
We taught him all the things, and now, suddenly, this little baby we brought into the world, this boy who always wanted to be around other kids, who struggled to memorize all the words and has always loved stories of magic and mythology is a teenager.
He has a life all of his own, and I'm not a part of it. It's a whole new world for us, and this time, it's him taking the lead and showing me how to navigate it. I have to trust him to help show me the way this time.