boy Tale – The Prince and I
Now I don’t often call my son a Prince though I feel he earned this title by simply being born, and I make no qualms in saying so. After all it was he who saved this distressed damsel. His existence alone was all she needed to know she must free herself from the darkness…
And once she was rescued she said, “Oh snap, whatever do I do with a boy?!?”
Before I even laid eyes on him, I knew things were going to be different. My mother saw him first as he was making his way and said, “He is so beautiful,” then added, “but he looks just like his father.” Umm, ya, they all did. Don’t they all? Isn’t this natures way of assuring the father will bond with their young? I thought I’d read that somewhere. Anyway, he really did look just like my ex. Aside from my full lips, he was his father’s replica.
I was also fascinated that unlike my girls he had practically NO hair when he was born. With all us girls being “Hair-Bears” even at their births you could catch a glimpse of my dark curly hair genes being passed along. So I guess it never dawned on me I could actually birth a nearly bald baby. That is until my boy arrived, with barely-there hair of a reddish hue, and indeed he was the fairest of them all. Still is.
Also, apparent straight from his birth was his strength. Despite his very long journey, and his size which can be dangerous to both baby and mom, he scored nearly perfect on his APGAR. He was the only one of my three I was able to hold straight away, and I was thrilled to hear he was easily able to make full use of his lungs while he screamed loudly in my ear. However, even though I did not have Gestational Diabetes, because of size nurses advised they’d have to check his blood sugar -and before I was even stitched up, I had to give consent for him to have an ounce of formula as his sugar level had plummeted the second his umbilical food source was cut away.
From there I was advised to put the baby to breast. So all my newborn son did was suckle. Non-stop. I actually became alarmed and buzzed the nurses from my hospital bed to inquire if he would ever stop nursing. Not likely, they said. I was reminded that since he was over 10 lbs, he probably needed a little extra (which of course he wasn’t getting from me at that point). Well that was no joke. He became quite upset we even had to break him away for his newborn photo and made his hungry, sucky mouth the entire time. My boy sure had no trouble working up the milk production he knew he needed. By the time I got home, I had breasts as big and round as basketballs. I seriously thought they would smother him, yet somehow he managed.
Needless to say, even though I had been a Mama for 11 years on his birthday, it wasn’t long after his arrival that I realized just how very unprepared I felt for a boy. There were so many new experiences I simply hadn’t thought about. Just saying, “my son” sounded different. Or what about getting pistol whipped during diaper changes? That was definitely an eye-opener. It took me some time to figure out how to quite diaper him so his clothes would stay dry. At his first check-up with the pediatrician I was asked why I double diapered him. Flush-faced I had asked if there was some “baby boy class” I could take. He explained it was all in the positioning. Ya, well I was actually afraid to position him down there because of his circumcision boo-boo. Even finding cute clothes for my baby boy was more of a challenge. Does one really have to go to a fancy baby boutique to find a color other than blue?
Well my worries over raising a boy quickly eased away. However, what I DID learn is that I always have more to learn. For instance while I had never discouraged my girls from playing with toys simply because of their gender (ie. if they wanted trucks, they could have trucks). Buuut, after my son arrived it was my who girls were quick to point to out that in fact I had been biased by never playing sports with them when they were young, only introducing dance and music. So I thought, “Well shit, I had better get my ass out there and throw some balls around.” By age 2 my son was obsessed with soccer balls, and today it is his favorite sport, as well as mine. Of course! He does also dance by the way;)
I am happy to see my son growing to be quite an out-going young man with lots of friends. He is also an avid reader, and although he could read and recite poetry before his second birthday, there are those occasional days he tells me his homework will “take too much time.” Welcome to life kid. Like his Mama my boy has a strong personality, so if he is feeling uncooperative I have the pleasure of observing his vein pulsing and pencil pounding in protest. I simply remind him that we can do it the short way or the long way, and Mommy can stay up all night long. However the homework will get done. My very smart boy will always chose the shorter route.
I am quite proud to see my son’s sweet and sensitive side as well. One night I told him I had a sick belly but couldn’t lie down yet because I had far too much work to do. He quickly came to my aid, bucket in hand which he had lined with a trash bag. He also brought me down a glass of ice water. Next, he further surprised me by climbing my desk chair to pop a Tums into my mouth. With that, he said just to let him know if I needed anything else.
So you see he still rescues me on occasion, as he always seems keenly aware of when his Mommy is need of assistance. Recently I was at the Hair Salon and they decided to seat my under the heated dryers which I despise. I was literally sweating from forehead to tatas, but since my boy was with me I opted not to shout out across the salon, “Yo it’s hotter than a Mother Trucker up in here!” Yet, my son knew his mother was distressed. “Melting” in fact, he noted after feeling my forehead. Quickly, he dashed off signaling the stylist who was blowing out someone’s hair to inform him that his Mommy was, “too hot!”
He also saves me from making foolish merchandise purchases. Usually so long as my sports bra is working for me I don’t care what else shakes, rattles and rolls while I am up in my fitness. However I had heard about a product called, “Spanx” that will hold in any loose meat. So while out shopping with my son one day, I pondered making such a purchase of panties of this brand, thinking these may hold in that belly skin which never quite made it back into place after having my daughter 20+ years ago. Fortunately for me, my Prince is also an apparent expert in woman’s lingerie. He examined them, and quickly proclaimed Spanx not only look bad, but smell bad. Back on the rack they went.
So truly I’d say my little Prince has duly earned the right to keep his title. At least in my eyes.