You begin to notice something when you become a mom to both a girl AND a boy. It's something that you may have been told before you had children but never really considered because it didn't hold much weight. It's the timeless truth that says that raising boys and girls is just different. It seems obvious enough but after becoming a mom I convinced myself that there just couldn't be that much of a difference when it came to raising two different genders...at least not when they're little I assured myself.
However, after about 400 days of careful consideration I may just have to agree with those wise old words. Growing up in a house full of girls I always knew what to expect when it came to fighting over Barbie dolls, playing dress up, coloring quietly in the playroom, and pulling each other's hair in the midst of a disagreement. I didn't, however, consider what life would be like with a boy in the mix and just how much it could change the familiar dynamics of my world.
Being a stay-at-home-mom, I have the privilege of carefully monitoring the sights and sounds of my home. I listen in on the many conversations that occur throughout the various nooks and crannies; picking up on new games my daughter plays with her dollies, or finding new places my son likes to hide simply by following the sounds of his babbling. I am the eyes and ears of this place and I take great pride in that.
As I've watched my household grow, not only in size but in gender, I have also watched the activities in my home go from playing "princess" with tea parties to playing princess with half of a tea set and a chipped cup because a certain someone seemed to think smashing his tea cup on the table was much more entertaining.
I've watched dinner turn from a quiet, mess-free evening, to a food-flying, frenzy filled event; I've watched our family room go from organized play, to "let's see if we can get every toy out of it's current location just because" type of play. I've watched my makeup drawer turn into a drawer full of potential chew toys. And I've watched crayons go from being a source of vibrant creations to the product of vibrant excretions.
To say that adding a boy to our family has turned our home on it's nose is an understatement. But in that same breath...I wouldn't change it for the world. Our home has seen more laughter, more enthusiasm, and more joy because of that sweet little boy. He has forever changed the atmosphere of our home and has given his loving sister a constant companion.
Her love continues to blow my mind and motherly expectations. She teaches me each day the importance of forgiveness and acceptance. It's through her actions and her words that constantly transform my heart. She has such a desire to call out the good in all aspects of life. I am truly encouraged by the amount of strength she possesses.
So...is raising girls and boys so different? My answer...absolutely.
Their actions are different, their nature is different, and their energy is different BUT their love remains the same. It's an encompassing love. It stretches out far past the shadows and grabs a hold of all those in its path. And although our world may look a little more chaotic these days...the love we possess is far richer than anything we've ever experienced. So cheers to raising boys & girls and all the craziness that comes with it! We are in this together! xoxo