We had a wonderful weekend following our high school junior up to Montgomery for track sectionals. It is very surreal that this is my youngest child and he is winding up his second-to-last year of high school. I have LOVED following my three kids around for the last sixteen years. Sometimes I wonder what I will do with myself when they are all out of the house and on their own. I tell myself often that the Lord will fill my days, and that brings me comfort.
I love being their mom.
Yesterday, our college sophomore drove over and joined us in Montgomery to watch his brother, undoubtedly hoping to obtain a free meal in the process. That is always an incentive for college kids to visit, offer them free food; works like a charm every time. So he and one of his friends made the short trek from where they attend college to the track meet. It was so very good to spend some time with them. The conversation sounds so different when I’m with them verses my girl and her friends. I never cease to be amazed at how different boy talk is from girl talk.
I’ve realized throughout their growing up years, in order to speak “girl” talk and “boy” talk, one must be bilingual.
At least that’s how it feels. I was raised with only sisters, so this whole “boy language” thing has been a discovery for me. I am amused constantly at how many special effects and sounds they use when in the company of other boys. A conversation can get quite lively with noises and reenactments that could compete for an academy award by anyone’s estimation; true story. I just lived it yesterday as my two were reunited and it was a real competition to get a word in edgewise.
They love the language they speak.
I can’t speak for anyone else, but my boys have a dramatic flair. One loves the stage and can honestly compete with anyone in his ability to formulate accents. You want a French accent? Got it. Spanish, Russian, British? Got that too. And it’s totally believable. The only one I don’t think he’s been able to master is German, just can’t get enough saliva in the back of the throat to make the throaty choking up a lung sound that it takes to convince an audience.
The other is shyer, but is shameless when it comes to competing with his brother in comedy, quick wit, and foreign accents. One might think, if they listened in around our house, that we are either entertaining foreign guests or we are crazy. I’ll let you decide which one is more probable.
It does make for a lot of laughs.
After the track meet yesterday we went and ate with the team and then decided to do a little shopping. We spent some time in the bookstore and then clothing stores; never ending entertainment the whole time. It felt so good to have them together and to feel partly whole again. We are so rarely a family of five anymore, I’m just thankful when several of us are able to get together.
I’ll take whatever I can get these days.
As we were wrapping up a delightful afternoon, we decided to get ice cream before parting ways. Our group headed to Sonic knowing we could sit outside and maximize every last minute of our time together. I envisioned us lingering over meaningful conversation, talking until the sun went down about our feelings, hopes and dreams and then saying a sorrowful good bye. Well, I was thinking that. I’m pretty sure they were thinking, “Ice cream? Did you say ice cream?”
We just don’t think like they do.
Once everyone got their ice cream and our conversation changed from the silly to the more serious, I began to get a glimpse of what was in the heart of these boys of mine. Oh, they put up a tough, funny front, but when they feel safe, it’s amazing what you hear. They talk about girls and cars and plans and frustrations. They really do feel stuff. Sometimes, and I’m talking as a girl here and not as their mom, I think we forget that boys have dreams too. They get their feelings hurt, they cry, they feel broken-hearted, get depressed, laugh their heads off, just like the girls. Of course, they may make farting sounds at any random time, and then bust out laughing as they see the reaction of the unsuspecting and startled audience around them.
Very unlike girls.
I have read many articles written to young women reminding them to guard their hearts and to stay pure, and I agree so much with that advice. But, I am a little surprised at how less often I see the same type of articles written for boys. As though it’s just assumed that young boys and men don’t need to hear the same message because they are only after “one thing.” And that one thing means more to them than the heart and soul of any girl.
What a mistaken philosophy.
Wouldn’t it be an amazing thing if we spent just as much time training our boys to think along the same lines? Instead of focusing so much on the girl making the right decision and leading the way to purity and transparency, we should remember that the boy really could and should be making the same decisions. The whole “boys will be boys” stigma can just be an excuse to let a young man get away with behaviors and attitudes that are completely the opposite of what we hope they will grow up to be.
True, it may take a different approach to reach into the minds of these guys; most need the message to be presented in their “language.” But, it is most definitely possible to raise young men who respect the boundaries of young ladies and even have boundaries of their own. I’m praying for a young man like this for my own daughter. There is something very attractive about a man who knows who he is and to Whom he belongs. It will win the respect of most ladies. Even the goofiest of guys who live by a standard will win themselves the lady of their dreams. Girls love a guy who lives in step his convictions.
It is a great sign of what’s in his heart.
And when it comes to the heart, you are talking in a universal language.
That’s right, the heart and ice cream; ice cream breaks down the walls of language as well.