I live in a house filled with boys: four sons, one husband, and two male English bulldogs. The energy level is exhausting. Our Suburban is in perpetual motion to and from sports, concerts, and school events. The refrigerator needs constant restocking. And our bathrooms need industrial cleaning.
In a house of boys, quiet time means quiet wrestling.
As a mom of all boys, my life revolves around sports. My boys live to play sports. Several nights a week and most Sundays, we pack food, equipment and homework into the car to head for some sporting venue in the greater Cleveland area. The pace is hectic but I love watching their passion. And I have learned so much about sports; I can discuss the rules of hockey, lacrosse, soccer, and baseball with any sports fanatic. Still, I occasionally ask myself, “Is there life beyond the arena?”
Indeed, there are sports beyond the arena right inside our house, site of constant wrestling matches. Before raising boys, I never knew that XY chromosomes are hard-wired for wrestling.
Now, my dream room is a padded basement with a chute for food delivery.
Our house looks distinctly different than a house with girls. It resembles a frat house, with sporting equipment, books, and “smelly” clothes littered everywhere. The bathrooms are especially frightening (boys lack precise aim). I stock anti-bacterial wipes and scented candles. When I know company is coming, I scour every inch of each bathroom. I keep the status of my bathrooms a secret by restricting access to the bathrooms upstairs. (Their dad can use any of the bathrooms in our house, because he has been trained).
Many people remark that I am lucky to have all boys. But my boys can throw a tantrum with the best of them. They are brought to tears quickly and moody is a word regularly used in our house. We also live in the midst of a “drama queen” or two.
And though boys’ jeans are less expensive than girls’, did you ever price a pair of men’s dress shoes? (My 15-year-old’s size 11 shoes can cost over $150). Add the bickering or fist fighting and I don’t always agree that parenting boys is easier than girls.
Still, I know I am lucky and I wouldn’t trade any of it! Who else has five male perspectives under one roof? Whether it’s choosing paint color or choosing a black-tie gown, my boys love to give their opinions. I may not be the best-dressed mom on the block, but I am certainly the best looked-after. My boys are surprisingly conscious of my feelings and show genuine concern when I am stressed or under the weather.
I can’t wait to see what type of men they will become. For sure they will make great husbands, fathers, friends, and bosses. In the meantime, I can only hope that their wives or girlfriends are more prepared for them than I was. It is definitely an adventure.