Friday, September 30, 2011

The Greatest Gift From my Son

Loving his new baby sister
I have a boy, who is very much a boy. He loves is obsessed with playing with cars, trucks or anything with wheels. He loves to be the male macho superhero. He possesses those traits that are culturally associated with being masculine: fiery, confident, strong, bold, and intense all come to mind.

Yet, he is also sweet, sensitive, nurturing, and can get very co-dependent. This is the yin to his yang.

We all have masculine and feminine parts of ourselves. Some are physical traits, others are in the mental or emotional body. It is healthy to have a balance of this.

What I love about this time in my son's life though, is he still greatly respects females, and isn't afraid to explore that female nature inside of himself. 

For example, in his role-playing, he is always mom, and usually pregnant or taking care of a baby. Unless he he is a superhero. But "mom" lately is gaining strength over "superhero". He takes time to explore this character and is, as one of my friend's pointed out, very committed to his characters.

He isn't afraid to wear pink, or "girlie" looking clothes. In his own words he has told me that pink is for girls. I corrected him by saying a lot of girls like pink. Whether he believed me or not I don't know. But he is a very perceptive lad, and almost four, so I am sure he has noticed what girls wear in this culture.

He has taken to wearing this necklace (below) that he made and will not take it off. It has pink and purple beads (and blue and green), with a white and pink pony charm in the middle. It looks rather "girlie" don't you think?

He doesn't do it all the time, but has found some hand-me-down clothes for my daughter in his size and wants to wear them out.

I do not encourage any of this, nor do I discourage it. I just observe and let him explore if he wishes. 

Upon asking if anyone said anything about the blue barrette in his hair at school the other day - there didn't seem to be much reaction. I wonder if there was.

The thing is, my son seems to be a bit of a subtle alpha dog. The other kids like him and respect him, as much as they can for that age. So he probably wouldn't of got picked on too much if any because of it. In fact, one of the other mother's asked where I got his necklace because her son wanted one. Go figure.

My son loves to roll with the boys, yet I find it so touching that I am raising a boy whose biggest role-model, so far, is me, his mother

I love that I am raising a boy who sees the beauty and power that comes from girl's and women's more subtle  inner strength. I know he basks in the compassion and love that seems to just pour out of mothers. For the most part, he instinctually trusts other mothers.  He instantly will warm up in a new environment as long as there are female role-models.

Men, however, he doesn't always trust. He hasn't quite figured them out yet.

I remember being completely blown away when I found myself in a corporate banking job on Bay Street (the Wallstreet of Canada). Here I was working in a very masculine-type yang pressure power-hungry environment for a renowned short-tempered shark of an investment banker. But what I found, after a while, was this shark I was working for, was in fact, the first man I have ever known who had so much respect for women and females-alike. It wasn't a sexualize or obsessive devotion or anything. Just a very genuine loving gratitude and respect for the mothers, wives, and women in general.  It just made me respect him even more.

Perhaps this speaks more to the environment that I was raised in. I was raised to believe, like most girls growing up in the 80's, that girls could do anything boys could do, and maybe even better. My parents certainly echoed this notion for me. However, the biggest male role-model in my life, my dad, didn't truly believe this about the already grown up women in the world.

My prayer is that my son can hold onto this love and respect he has for women and girls for the rest of his life. Especially if he becomes an influential man in the world.

What a world we could create that has a more balanced "power" structure.  There would be less war, fighting, and need to possess things and dominate them. Instead more love and compassion, and listening and getting to the deeper truth.

This reminds me why my role as a mother is such a powerful one. This, my friends, is how we change the world, one mother at a time.

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