Ever since I had my son, I find myself still saying "I don't like to gender stereotype" but now always followed by a gigantic "but..."
I'm certainly all "RAH RAH GIRL POWER!" and "Anything you can do I can do better" or at least equally well, perhaps in stilettos and pink lace, but yeah, Girls! Rock!
But boys, especially the rambunctious ones, are just different.
Well, for more than the obvious reasons.
I've seen and heard about my fair share of wild little girls - many of whom are the lovely daughters of my friends. And in many ways, they are very much like my wild little son, who responds best to the Cesar Milan method of parenting (you know, walk them into submission type thing) and requires constant supervision and activity lest you find your walls and his face covered in marker.
And that's on an easy day.
But there's just something about their DNA that makes their "wild" just different. Whether it's bolder, bigger, louder or faster, it's decidedly boyish, no matter how much it pains me to admit it.
And so, I have to say that I had all but given up my little pipe dream of my son ever occupying himself on his own with something constructive, at least for longer than a few minutes, and without the assistance of our friendly babysitter Diego, or his Jurassic playmates, the complete cast of The Dinosaur Train.
That was until, this weekend, when I took him, along with his collection of diggers and dozers to "the gravel pit" - or basically a huge driveway at a local park, an idea given to me by my mother-in-law who had done the same thing to day before.
(Go mother-in-law, which, well, I can't believe I said that).
And that's when I saw it. A little boy in his element, completely enraptured by pushing dirt and rocks around for almost 45 minutes.
He did the same thing the next day in their flower bed. (Whoops).
While it took me just as long to clean him off, I didn't mind the scrubbing of his dirty feet and and the scraping of his fingernails.
And instead of feeling guilty for not thinking of this sooner, and perhaps, parenting him the way I thought he should be rather than the way he really is (hey, I'm still learning), I just enjoyed watching my son be himself.
All alone. And happy.
And all boy.
Speaking of boys, I recently read an post by Jen Singer about boys and reading that you moms of boys (and hey, girls too) might find interesting.