Now, hear me out on this.
Years ago, Dave and I were out for a hike. This was before we had ever discussed getting married, and waaaay before we ever thought we would have kids.
It was a nice day in the early spring, before most people would consider going out for a walk in the woods. We passed by a group of people, all adults, except for one little boy, who was moving at thrice speed, bouncing around the trail like a little pinball, forward, back, against trees, jumping up and down, with all the noises and sounds you would expect from a little boy running around in the woods.
It was so typical I maybe would not have noticed him, except that he was also, literally, I swear this was true, he was literally hitting himself in the head with a rock. For what I assumed was entertainment.
The adults accompanying him seemed unconcerned. So we smiled and said good morning, as you do on a hike. As they passed and the noise of the little bouncy boy faded I asked Dave, “He was hitting himself with a rock, right?”
“Yep,” he said.
“Wow. Boys are dumb.”
“Yep,” Dave agreed. He had a deep well spring of understanding, having been a little boy himself. But we laughed every time we remembered that little boy. He was hitting himself in the head with a rock.
And I joked that if we ever have kids, I just didn’t know what I’d do if we ended up with boys, because, well, boys hit themselves in the head with rocks for entertainment.
As an example, I can maybe illustrate my point with an familiar specimen.
This is my husband. I love this man. I love his smile. I love his cute butt. I love that he is so smart and he is so good at retaining knowledge, which is not a trait I share. He is calm and unflappable, which are also traits I don’t share. He’s sort of shy and doesn’t have much of an ego. He’s a thinker. Not just in thinking about the world, but he is a thoughtful person, without being oversensitive or squishy. He might seem reserved, but this is because he doesn’t like talking to strangers, and he is deathly afraid of having to make small talk.
He tells me he was much the same way as a child. He has always been shy. He’s always been reserved. He’s always been smart. He’s always been a thinker. He’s never been reckless or a risk taker.
Dave needs more than one hand to count how many times he went to the ER, just as a kid. I…never went to the ER as a kid. I realize this is because I was a little girl, which is exactly my point. Dave was smart and shy! And he still did a ton of stupid shit when he was a kid! Because he was a little boy!
Any guy reading this will think back to his childhood and chuckle, and they would very likely love to have a discussion over beers about their childhood scars. It’s a universal condition. Boys are dumb.
So we’ve had a few jokes as we’ve gone through this whole pregnancy thing. The first joke was about how Dave wanted twins. Wouldn’t it be great to get it all out of the way at once? Twins would be fabulous! Your vagina can handle it!
And sure, having twins seemed like an efficient use of time and resources, but it’s not the kind of thing you should really set your heart on. So I didn’t think about it too deeply. And I rolled my eyes when Dave mentioned twins. Until this, of course. Haha.
Then the second joke was how, haha, if we have twin boys, I said, I’m going to go back to work, and I’m going to work like hell, and I’m going to make a lot of money, and haha, I’m going to buy myself a whole separate house to live in, and Dave and the boys can have their own house. Because I just couldn’t imagine living in a house with all boys. Haha! So funny!
Why did I joke about this? If I were at all superstitious, I would say we made it happen, with all our joking. What’s the likelihood of twins? It’s 1 in 25 for my age, plus maybe a higher genetic likelihood since I have two maternal aunts who had twins. What’s the likelihood of twin boys? 1 in 4. Just FYI, we don’t think these twins are identical. There’s a 1 in 250 chance of identical twins.
So if I’m sounding like I’m disappointed about two boys, I’m not. At all. It was just an outcome I hadn’t thought about seriously, just like I hadn’t thought about twins seriously. We were getting prepared for a boy and a girl, since it was the most common outcome (statistically, fifty percent of twin sets are one girl, one boy). I really like the idea of two boys. It suddenly feels less complicated. We just want them to be happy, and we want them to be decent human beings.
I love all the comments from mothers of boys chiming in with how much fun boys are, and how the relationships between mothers and boys can be extra close. Thank you all for sharing your experiences. I’m just hoping that the “fun” with boys isn’t code for “many trips to the emergency room.”