Monday, November 19, 2007

I wanted a girl…


When I was pregnant, I hoped I would have a girl. I wasn't distraught at the thought of having a boy, I just felt so much more comfortable with the idea of having a girl. I know girls- most of my friends are girls, Im a girl, my sister is a girl. You know. But everyone took one look at my belly, and informed me I was having a boy. So I was expecting a boy, but deep inside was hoping that my belly shape was throwing everyone off and that there was actually a girl cooking in there.

When Amado was born, I didn't give it another thought. After 41 hours of labor, I was happy to have him out. And he wasn't completely well, had to spend his first 5 days in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit, so I was focused on him being healthy enough to come home.

But now, looking back at this all, its interesting to reflect on the fact that even with all my gender analysis, with my belief that we socialize kids based on our own gender roles, I still wanted a "girl". I think a lot of progressive and radical people do this. I had an idea of what a girl is and I wanted that.

Often, when mamas like me reflect back on that journey, they end up in the place of being happy with their boys because they bring out a new part of them, that girl wouldn't have. Watching garbage trucks and digging with a tonka tractor in the yard is pretty cool. But even still in this, a lot of us continue to keep those gender expectations in place. If I had a girl, she wouldn't be into garbage trucks. He likes the tonka tractor because he's a boy.

What Amado is teaching me is that we gotta redefine what a "boy" is. Because I know Amado pretty well. And I don't think he is the anomaly, I think this is what a boy is. Boys are loving. Boys like to cuddle. Boys like to dress up like bumble bees. Boys like shiny glittery beads and handbags that match. Boys love to cook. Boys are enthusiastic about helping with the laundry. Boys love to grab their own brooms and sweep next to you. Boys beam when you notice they are working hard. Boys love play kitchens. Boys like to cuddle with dolls. Boys love to read.

Some of us are happy with our boys, but still pine for a girl. Im not. Im happy being the mama of a boy. Im proud to be the mama of a boy. I love being a mama to a boy.

1 comment:

Marcy said...

You write very well.