Happy birthday to my lil eight year old boy who has taught me everything I ever needed to know about men

I grew up with a mother who was the paradigm of femininity with her perfectly coiffed hair and manicured nails, a woman who wouldn’t dare leave the house without her stockings and pair of high heel pumps. In a house where delicate ivory curtains adorned every window and Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazines were a permanent fixture on the coffee table, my sisters and I were completely clueless about the likes and dislikes of the male persuasion.

In fact, until I started dating, I barely knew the difference between a baseball and basketball, and had never even been to a sporting event. My poor dad was simply outnumbered. When I got married I realized I had a pretty tough learning curve ahead of me, and while I thought marriage would ultimately given me a bird’s eye view into the evolution of men, mothering a son has provided me with my greatest insight into the secret early beginnings of boys, who ultimately become these men. I absolutely believe in nature vs. nurture. As soon as they pulled my son from my womb I’m sure he must’ve been clutching a matchbox car, action figure or dinosaur!

At eight years old , he’s firmly made clear his likes and dislikes; princess movies are out and power rangers are in ( although I am now convinced that Transformers are the DEVIL’s WORK as three minutes after opening the package my husband and I spent 30 minutes trying to restore said Transformer to its original glory which is simply IMPOSSIBLE!) . Although I never imagined I’d be remotely interested in these things I am because I desperately want to share his passions, despite how mind numbing I personally think they are.

Yet this past week while my daughter took her dance class, my son and I sat in the waiting room for what I foresaw would be an interminable hour. I forgot the crayons, books, DS; aka- the bag of beat the boredom tricks. And of course he refused to eat the chicken nuggets I brought along with us seriously my boy is so pin thin- you’d probably call children’s welfare services if you saw him in his birthday suit- hence my need to be prepared with chicken nuggets at all times- in the unlikely event that he might just eat a morsel.

Then we heard the music, and well he decided it was time to wow me with his cha-cha moves and reminded me that he was crowned best dancer in summer camp (all true—although not quite sure of the talent pool’s quality). And I must admit- just being with him- watching him do his completely off beat moves—which looked a bit more like karate to me-well it just made me fall that much more in love with him and immediately filled me with anxiety about the days when dancing with his mama in public will be strictly prohibited.

And of course more than anything my newly minted eight year old boy has given me a real window into the male species.. all they really need is a stiff drink, while sitting with their hand in their pants watching a show on TV. LOVE you my sweet Jackson.


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