Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Boy houses versus girl houses

Terrible storms ripped through the Midwest on Sunday.  Our little patch of Indiana just happened to remain unscathed, minus some pretty massive wind gusts.  This is a neighbor's tree (or what's left of a tree).

I have a friend with four daughters.  Recently I visited her home smack dab in the middle of after school craziness.  I fully expected to walk into a house filled with screams, squeals, and energy.  Instead, it was like stepping into a library.  It was peaceful and calm and...delightful.  I'm sure not every home brimming with girls is this serene, but I'm just betting the odds are greater that a tranquil house will be filled with more estrogen than testosterone.

Boy homes just aren't the same.

Take last night.

I implemented a new "figure it out yourself because you're a big boy" policy.  I'm trying to get my little boys to do things themselves without mommy intervention (aka nagging).  The instructions were simple: shower.pajamas.teeth.laundry put away.  To remove myself from the temptation to assist/nag, I headed downstairs to tend to the dinner dishes.

Within minutes, little feet thundered across the floor.  Squeals (some happy, others not so much) echoed from the beams.  Music blared.  It sounded like perhaps a rave/ fraternity party/animal stampede was up and running inches away from my head.

I clutched my dish towel and toyed with how to respond.  To intervene or not to intervene, I pondered.  I took a few deep breathes and decided to let them figure it out.  Until...

Cooper raced down the steps clad in only his birthday suit.  Green sprays covered so much of his body that he took on the form of a three-dimensional Jackson Pollack piece.  He was half-sobbing/half-laughing as he recounted the upstairs activities.

Sob. And then he.  Sob. Grabbed a can.  Sob. Of shaving cream.  Sob. And covered me.

As soon as the words tumbled out of his mouth, he raced back upstairs.

At that moment, I realized intervention was not only needed, but necessary.  I threw down my towel in defeat and climbed up the stairs petrified about what sort of scene I would happen upon.

When I entered the bathroom, I spotted Cooper clutching the shaving cream can inches away from his open mouth.  I screamed, "No Cooper, no!  It's not whipped cream!"  After I forcibly removed the shaving cream can from Cooper's tight grip, I noted the bathroom actually looked better than expected.  Most of the shaving cream landed on Cooper and not the carpet or the mirrors.

The boys were in hysterics, finding the whole ordeal to be perhaps the best thing that's happened to them since they created the human pinball machine.

Right then and there, I put the kibosh on my new "figure it out yourself" policy.  They're not ready and neither is my sanity (or my house).

I thought about my friend with daughters and wondered if she fully knew how the "other half" (boy moms) lived.  

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