Raising Boys

Since I have two boys, I really can’t compare them to girls.  But I have a heard time believing a little girl would try to get you to sniff her butt.  Again, maybe they do, and I just don’t know because right now I am raising boys.  Yet they seem to be just a little different.  I’m not talking about high energy levels or potty humor because I’ve seen hyperactive girls and I watched kindergarten girls laugh at fart jokes.  But there is something so manly as trying to force a burp or a fart.

Evan has been trying to force himself to burp for months.  Months.  If you have read the other posts, you know he can’t quite get it.  He just does a pretend burp, and in case I missed the “burp,” he proudly exclaims that he just burped.  Growing up with brothers, boy cousins, and all their boy friends, I have learned that it is a proud achievement to burp your name, vowels, or ultimately the alphabet.  While I am sure my husband enjoys these boyish antics, I have never caught him teaching or complementing Evan on his fine burping skills.  Leaving me to believe, that this must be a natural trait, like running, jumping, or gossiping.  I only wonder what evolutionary value force burping has other than crude entertainment.  Not one to force a change on nature if it is harmless, I just make Evan excuse himself after every burp, hoping secretly it becomes too tedious to do both and give up his pretend burping.  Like I have a chance.

A couple of weeks ago, Evan put his hand down his underwear to scratch his butt.  For some reason, he sniffed his finger.  A discovery!  “Mommy, do you want to smell my finger?”  Are you kidding?  No.  But somehow my face betrayed the horror I felt as I calmly said “No, we don’t smell other people’s fingers” because he became insistent.  Great.  The other day he was naked and climbed up my back, trying to put his butt in my face, saying “smell it, Mommy, smell it.”  What?  I remember my brothers trying to fart on each other’s heads or just to clear a room.  When did my cute, sweet son become a little ape like his uncles?  Again I wish I could point my finger at my husband, after all he too is a boy, but I know he hasn’t played any boyish antics like this.  Wait, let me check.  Just like I thought a no with a weird look of “why would I teach him that?”  It was worth a shot to find out where this behavior came from. (Not my brothers either because this behavior would have occurred right after our family visit, not weeks afterwards.)

The only thing I can blame my husband for is Evan’s colorful language.  Evan has learned the word “scumbag.”  Watch last weeks Sand Diego/Denver game, and you would know how Evan picked up the language.  (Stupid football.)  At least Evan was napping through most of the colorful language.  While my husband chuckled, thinking it could be worse, I pointed out that Evan WILL use it in public and I hope my husband is around when people give us looks.  I curbed my language, and I need my husband to curb hi or he’ll have to watch the game at a bar.  (I know what a horrible punishment.  Watching a football game while drinking a beer surrounded by other football fans.)  I’m not raising a little hoodlum.

So somehow I got stuck raising boys, which should have been a foregone conclusion because of the all the boys in the families.  Now I have to pray that one day they will grow up to be civilized.  I know this is just the tip of the iceberg; we have elementary and high school yet to got.  It’s going to be a whole lot worse before it gets better.  I just am shocked how certain behaviors are innate.  God help me.

Peeing incidents

Yes, potty training has it’s ups and downs and many, many hilarious moments.  As a mother of boys, the penis has several fun tricks for boys to learn.  I wonder how potty training is for girls.  I am amazed.  A-mazed by how often that little tiny organ gets so exciting.

As I wrote yesterday, we have a new penis rule.  Rule #4 do not show your penis out in public.  Maybe I should revise that and say don’t show it to any one.  The other day as the boys and I ate dinner (my husband often comes home too late for the “starving” boys to eat), Tornado E pulled down his underwear to see his penis.  Yes, it’s still there.  Keep eating.  He was surprised by the penis’s new trick.  “Look, Mommy!  It’s standing!”  Yes, that’s what penises can do.  Please pull your underwear up and finish your mac and cheese.  I wonder how much easier it would be to have girls.

Yesterday we were cooking dinner, and the boys were running around, being pirate-explorers, looking through binoculars and spy-glasses.  My husband was grilling outside as I made the sides outside.  My best friend was keeping an eye on the boys, when Tornado E yelled with glee, “I went pee outside!”  We are looking at rule number five, aren’t we?  Because this was the second time that day.  My best friend and my husband congratulated Tornado E.  I came out and explained to Tornado E how he couldn’t get candy if he peed outside.  He was just too proud of his accomplishment to care.  Hmm.  I think that was a sign.  A minute late my best friend asked me to come outside again.  She pointed to a large circle made with wet concrete that had a diameter of four feet, and the wet line making the circle was four inches thick.

BF: What do you think that is?

I looked around to see if any squirt guns or hose or anything that made water was around.  I shrugged.

Me: I don’t know.  (pause, thinking).  Oh God.  That can’t be pee.  There’s too much!

BF: That’s what I was thinking.  But it can’t be anything else.

Me: No.  Hey, can you come over here?

My husband left the grilling hot dogs, making sure the boys were on the other side of the yard.

Me: Do you know what made that?  (I pointed to the circle)

Husband: No.  The hose?

BF: Tornado E!  Can you come over here?

Me: Please.  (aside) We have to remember to use our manners to set examples.

BF: right.  Tornado E, can you please come here?  (Tornado E was already there.  She bent down to be eye level.)  Tornado E, were did you pee?  Can you show me?

Tornado E: (turned in a circle) Right there!  I ran around!  I made a circle!

Great!  My son has already learned how to make shapes with his pee.  That’s awesome.  If he knew how to write his name, he would have done that.  Wait.  That might be a great way to teach him!

Or not.  It’s just a thought.

This morning my husband related to me about Tornado S’s peeing adventure.  As he watched the boys by himself, my husband was playing with Tornado E, building a Lego tower, while Tornado S played with the police cars.  My husband looked up to see Tornado S had silently wandered away from the family room.  My husband called for Tornado S.  Out of the bathroom came a smiling Tornado S.  Without his diaper.  My husband smiled and grabbed him, asking Tornado S were his diaper was.  That’s when my husband noticed the bottom of Tornado S’s shirt was wet.  He raced into the bathroom to find the diaper laying on the floor.  Right next to a giant puddle of pee.  My husband was completely horrified.  Welcome to parenthood, baby!

So there you have it one peeing adventure after another.  Honestly I should have known they were going to turn out like boys.  As I remember it, my brothers and cousins were always using potty humor.  And now Tornado E is too.  The word “poop” makes him giggle.  I’m raising honest-to-God, authentic boys.  Before you know it, they’ll be able to burp their names.  Tornado E already pretends to burp because he can’t figure out how to force out a burp.   I remain calm and just remind him to say excuse me, which he usually does.  But he and Tornado S are ALL boy.  God help me!