Living, Loving, Breathing Boys… I remember when I started this blog, many moons ago, I got some messages about the title of my blog… concerns that it may come across incorrectly… and yet it seems to just be what described my life, so I went with my gut.
This is so my life! Boys, my boys… I live them, I love them (to the moon and back) and most of the hours in a day I am breathing them… ( you have to have 6 boys to really understand what breathing boys is really about…).
I have been really struggling with my older three this summer… loving them and then wishing …. as they try to figure out how to go from being a boy to a man and some days it isn’t pretty. Someone asked me if they fight… HA!!! Sammy and Tyler, being 12 months apart, have a crazy relationship of being buds and hanging out and being foolish together and then without me having any understanding of what happened, they are fighting with all the craziness… fists and beating each other to what seems to me to a pulp. This is where I usually scream for Sanj, who comes and calmly watches them beat it out. (This is actually what some boys do, then they get over it rather than like us girls, who really can just internalize and hold a grudge…). I usually have to walk away … totally distressed … telling Sanj if there is a ER run, he’ll be on it. Sanj seems to understand the need for them to get physical. I mean they even do this for fun often times. I really don’t get it!!!
So as I was beginning to say… it’s challenging… having three boys that are looking and smelling more and more like men. I find the (normal for this stage, I read) self absorption absolutely baffling. I mean really? How can it be about you? All the time?
This weekend past, Rajiv, my middle bro, invited me to go with his family, my mom and dad to Vancouver to see my youngest bro, Kumar and family, who had just moved out there. I was so delighted! A weekend alone. And yet all I could think of was how much the boys would love to go. How they have been great at having a summer of nothing… due to the fact that I am working and also all that comes with having their grandpa dealing with his cancer. They haven’t complained and have really been great about just puttering. I really wanted to take them. And then the opportunity came that they could go. All of them. I was totally thrilled. And then I began planning for them to come… and realized I was CRAZY! I just passed up a weekend alone!!!
The only catch was that they would have to fly alone on the way back. My plane back was full. It seemed ok. I mean how hard is it to fly? On the way there, I showed them the ropes. Check in, security, finding the right boarding lounge, how to find their seats… how to pick up their luggage… easy peasy.
While in Vancouver, which by the way is beautiful… all the Dixit side cousins were together. That meant ages 18- 3 years of age… all together in a small space.
We had a great time exploring some of the sights. With this many kids, there is always someone crying. There is always someone needing a bandaid. There is always someone up to no good. There is a lot of activity happening… always.
Here’s what I noticed about my boys. Put in this environment, the boys really stood up to the task of being big brothers to their younger cousins. I was very proud of them. I felt like all those years of parenting, nagging, reminding them to use their manners, or to treat others with kindness or to simply walk away if there wasn’t a reasonable answer, finally seemed to be there somewhere in their heads.
I’m not really one to brag about my boys because truthfully, 9/10 they can drive me crazy!!! Oh, I love them to bits. Yet if I am being really honest, you know so honest that it might reveal that I am not a really good mom deep down inside… sometimes I really am not sure I am cut out to be mother to these creatures. I mean… what was I thinking? Well, that’s easy. I LOVED BABIES! I was really good at all that juggling 3 babies in 3 years. I loved that. And of course then after baby number … I admit we were trying for a girl. But thankfully my love for babes made me keep trying.
Here’s the thing, I never really thought about how HARD it could be after babies. I just thought it would be ok. I never thought about the noise, the smells, the peed toliet seats, the amount of food that would be needed, the energy that needed to expend, the activities, hockey and the amount of time that would be spent in rinks, the smell of all that hockey gear, the stinky shoes (WOW, that stench!!!), the rolling of eyes and talking back because of course they are right, the attitude (that I would have been beat for if I every displayed it)… I never thought about the laundry… OMG… Laundry should be a curse word. Really!!! I never knew it would get hard, sometimes too hard. I never knew I would feel such heart ache when they got hurt. I never knew I’d feel such fear when they didn’t’ answer their phone or were late to get home. I never realized that sometimes tears would just leak out of my eyes when I would pause and think of them, think of how much I absolute adore these boys that turn my world upside down, everyday! I guess I just never thought about much except their chubby cheeks, their delicious scent, their giggling and cooing. I couldn’t think past snuggling with them, sleeping with them and loving how I was their whole world!
Well, this summer has been full of me thinking I was just crazy. This summer I spent a lot of time thinking of if I would survive my oldest three… and what will life be like with the younger three as they get to that stage? This summer I spent a lot of time thinking “What if we had that 2.2 family everyone around me seems to have?”
Monday morning, yesterday, came fast. I packed up the suitcases. The older boys packed their stuff. Then came the time to leave to catch my plane. The boys would be leaving 3-4 hours later. I looked at them. My heart started to hurt, really hurt. I felt sick. I suddenly couldn’t’ imagine my life with the very creatures that drive me bonkers! My eyes were stinging. I felt true panick. What if something BAD happened? How would the handle the craziness that comes with flying? Check in, security, finding the right gate, sitting without fighting for a couple hours, dealing with all the rushing people to get their seats, then there was the biggie… taking off… and landing SAFELY? What if something horrible happened like a crash?
I was so scared. I found myself praying what were quite likely incoherent prayers to God, begging him to keep my babies safe. I couldn’t image how life would ever be if anything happened to them.
(Yes, I realize this was likely all irrational… but…)
Maybe it was this guilty of wanting to sell them all … a thought I would have every few hours, daily. I don’t know but I was given a real wake up call that moment.
I adore these boys of mine. My life is perfect. It’s crazy in every sense of the word but it’s all my crazy! I suddenly realized that as they sent me this pic from the airplane that I am so proud of these six boys. They are going to be great men. And some day… probably a very long time from now, when my house is EMPTY and QUIET and CLEAN.. I will likely miss all this CRAZINESS.
God heard the desires of my heart… one that I have had forever… to be mom. I can only trust that He knew I needed six boys- totally testosterone filled lads. This is our picture perfect family.
Guess what… we survived! All of us. I couldn’t have been more happy to see their faces coming out of the doors at the airport… knowing that I’m so blessed.
Thank you, Jesus, so much… for all of it… I love you.