Once upon a time, I was the mother to two sweet young girls, Amy (4) and Carly (2). We did everything together. At home we would bake, or paint, or make caterpillars out of egg-boxes. When we needed some fresh air, we would take our dogs to the park down the hill. Or we would take the skytrain to the mall. We would go to playgroups and dance classes and story time at the library.
And looking back those days always seemed to be so effortless and fun… well, almost fun… if you can call singing ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star’ followed by ‘The Wheels on the bus’ followed by ‘Mr Bee, Mr Bee, Mr Bumblebee’ in that exact order, every Wednesday morning at playgroup, without fail, for two straight years fun.
Having two sweet girls who would listen and do as they were told meant that I had plenty of time to gaze around playgroup or story time. And I would always find myself drawn to watching those mums with little boys, little boys who were so different from girls that they might as well have been aliens.
I often wondered what was going on.
How come little Johnny didn’t hear his mummy hollering his name across the entire playgroup gym even though all the other kids had frozen on the spot, the moment her high-pitched screech pierced their eardrums?
How come little Davey insisted on whizzing on a too-small tricycle around the perimeter of the circle of criss-crossed, apple-sauced kids singing harmoniously during circle time? Why wouldn’t he sit nicely on his mummy’s knee and make diamonds in the sky with his hands during Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star like the rest of the kids?
And what was with this fixation of balls? Footballs, basketballs, bouncy balls. Why did these little boys have to hone in on anything spherical in shape and start throwing it, kicking it, bouncing it around?
Well, all this wondering was way back then, back when I was the mother of two sweet little girls. Since then the number of kids in our family has doubled. Lola with her wonderfully stubborn ways has taught me so many lessons in humility. And Lance, well slowly but surely, Lance is teaching me all I need to know about being the mother of a little boy.