Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Boys will be Boys

" Boys will be boys" a tired looking Mom would say with an exasperated but knowing sigh. I was in my early twenties and completely repelled by young boys, wrinkling my nose when a eight year old would push past me in a restaurant.I would feel sorry for them and anyone who had boys or had to be around boys. What a pain in the rear they dirty and violent and spazzy. ECCCH. I hope I have girls someday.

Today I have three boys, 7, 5 and 21 months. I am in the middle of mayhem: spitting, wrestling, screeching, farting, burping,rocket ship blast noises,shooting, teasing, Indian rope burns, wet willies in ears, pee pee underwear balled up in corners, rocks in beds, boys falling off chairs and loud thunks of things bouncing off walls.

And I love it. Okay, not always. Sometimes I am to the limit of dirt and camping vacations. Mommy needs silence, a nice hotel and spa with hand and foot impeccable service.
But I can say, Thanks to my husband, my boys, and some great courses, I GET boys now. I actually marvel at them and delight in their quirks, talents, instincts, motivations and expressions.

I noticed that the other day when standing in the shade at the park, watching my boys play. My eldest was being chased by two younger boys. They were ganging up on him and Ben stopped, stood there and smirked at them. One of the smaller boys mother scolded them, exasperated, " Boys be NICE. Can't you just play NICELY???"

They turned and looked at us, with a blank look, moths gaped open, eyes completely checked out. Huh? Do you speaka my language?? they seemed to say...It struck me that boys have NO Interest in playing nice. Not even when they are the ones being chased. Girls play nice. Girls connect and play house and marry themselves off. Boys don't strive for "Nice". They do play nicely, they just don't strive for it. They want conquest, conflict, struggle and conquering! YES! Chase me! Then I will chase you!! "PSSHHHT! PSHHHT!" You're dead!"

"Boys, when given the choice between Right and Fun , will always choose FUN. "

And they do..not to be naughty. It's just their instinctual, primal fun FUN! It's play war, play battle, play conquering.WIN!!! It prepares then for the challenge of providing for their mate someday. It's practice for being a man.

Teachers who don't get this have a helluva time in the classroom. In a classroom boys are not set up to win, they are expected to sit, listen and nice...sooooo boring for them. I am guessing most female teachers are constantly annoyed by boys. They might see boys as dirty, spazzy, misbehaving GIRLS. When they expect boys to behave like girls they are constantly disappointed, exhausted by, and frustrated by boys. Anyone would be.
It's all about the context.

Now, when I think "Boys will be boys." it's with a new context, a newfound relish and peace of mind. They are doing what they are doing and I love them. I love their drive to help me, provide for me, save their friends and rescue people. Boys are relentlessly driven to be the hero. Their wiggle worm antics and noises of interruption are their way of preparing to battle, conquer and provide for a beautiful girl someday.
That's marvelous.
Those girls will be so lucky.

Zen Honeycutt

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