I have two girls ages almost 8 and almost 6. It’s imperative that I mention their almost ages. They tell me there’s a big difference between just 7 and almost 8 and just 5 and almost 6.
These two little girls make me a girl mom. I think you got that part, but I just wanted to clarify. An all-girl mom is very different from an all-boy mom.
Or so I thought.
I grew up with a family of girls. I envision boys to be rough and tough and troublemakers. I envision boy mamas to be used to the chaos and mess that boys make on a daily basis.
My assumption was clarified last weekend during an out-of-town vacation. The hotel which housed my two polite little girls, had a winding water slide and attached to it was a highly chlorinated pool perfect for little girls and little boys and adventurous dads. Some moms even got in too, although we tend to gravitate towards the hot tub instead.
Can you blame us?
I did get in the pool on occasion and one night when I was feeling extra adventurous, I even stood in line for that winding water slide. The pool was packed that night and one boy, almost 8-years-old, decided to play with my girls and me. At first, it was charming.
“Ah, that’s sweet,” I thought as the boy started diving for my almost 8-year-old’s pool toys. But then I realized he wasn’t taking turns and started grabbing the toys before my girls could get to them. And then, when my girl accidentally kicked his face while diving for the toy, the boy yelled, “Hey, watch where you’re going!” and sounded like a sassy teen not an almost 8-year-old boy.
I held in all comments like, “Boy, you shouldn’t be playing with us in the first place!” but decided to act 34 not almost 8.
My girl mama radar was in full force. “Let’s not play with him,” I whispered to my girls.
They agreed and we continued our game.
But the boy wouldn’t leave. He stayed by our side and even followed us up the stairs to the top of the winding water slide. As my almost 6-year-old was waiting to launch herself down the slide, that boy jumped in front and flew himself down first.
I was flabbergasted.
“Where is his mother?” I thought angrily. “He’s being so rude.”
The second time up, he followed us again, but this time when he tried to cut in front of me, I sternly said, “No. You must wait your turn,” and gave my best mama bear, don’t mess with my girls look.
At this point, I was feeling proud of myself. I successfully scolded an obnoxious almost 8-year-old boy. I was being a perfect girl mama to two perfectly polite little girls. “Too bad his mother wasn’t here to see this,” I thought.
I followed my girls up the stairs to the top of the slide for one last ride down. And then, while my youngest waited for her turn, I watched my almost 8-year-old, hastily plop her backside down in front of her baby sister and quickly plummeted into the water below.
She cut in lie and I felt like a heel.
All of this to say – sometimes our kids are obnoxious. Boys and girls – raised by good moms everywhere, still act like almost 8-year-olds. Because they are almost 8-year-olds. I have a feeling the boy moms already knew this.
Here’s my formal apology to you. I’m sorry I judged you. I love my babies fiercely and I have a feeling you do too. Your kid was obnoxious but so was mine. We aren’t that different after all.