Oh this boy of mine, where do I start? As you probably know, I'm comfortable with boys. Had two little brothers growing up. Been a houseparent of "only" boys for 9 years and then 2 years where I had 9 boys and 4 girls. So I've been surrounded by them. Not surprised by them. Not bothered by their noise or smell or physical activity or strange behavior.
But raising a boy from scratch? A whole 'nother ball game! Now, I know there are boys who are "quiet and gentle." And girls who are "wild and loud." But Shannon is a "typical" textbook first-born female. And Forest is a "typical" textbook male.
Loud. Wiggly. Wild. Easy to wind up, hard to wind down. Likes to throw anything and everything. Daring and dangerous. Extremely hands-on exploratory (what does this neon nail polish look like if I dump it on mom's beige carpet?). Cuddles his mamma. Follows his sister. Antagonizes the same sister. Loves his animals and cars. Funny and tricky. Wants to be tickled, thrown in the air, twirled, hung upside down, pushed HIGH in the swing for hours. Loves, loves, loves his blankie and pacie.
Sinful and foolish . . . like all children. He discovers the word "stupid" is not a word we should be saying . . . so takes delight in running through the house, loudly shouting "Mommy is STUPID!" (And honestly, it is funny to me because he doesn't have a CLUE what it means . . . though when this does happen, we hide the grins and his backside gets a visit with Daddy's hand and his soul gets a heart-to-heart with Daddy.)
Those things give him the most wonderful and interesting personality. But they also make this whole parenting thing a lot more challenging than your "average girl." (At least for me) How to train him to be a wise, Godly, courageous, caring, kind, sacrificial, risk-taking, family-caring man? Without destroying the wild-man that God has inside.
Forest will drive me to my knees (and already does) in prayers of desperation and begging God for wisdom. Perhaps that's why I have a son- to keep me humble in all things parenting!
So this is where you find me lately- on my knees with Forest- discussing good behavior, memorizing verses with him like "Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies," reminding him that he needs to obey his mom the first time he is told to do something. No we don't hit sister or take things from her. We don't leap from couch to couch in the day room. We sit at the table and eat our food, not swinging from the chairs. Learning to swim (today was his first day out of my arms in the pool!). Loving him, hugging him and encouraging him to obey!