Beloved Son…Mighty Warrior

“Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again. And what do we teach our children? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique. In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you. Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move. You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven. You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel. And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is, like you, a marvel? You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children.” -Pablo Picasso

Friday’s have officially been declared (by me) as “Pajama Pants Day”. Meaning…exactly how it sounds…I don’t get out of my pj’s ALL DAY!

SO, today being Friday, I was elated when Chris said he was taking the boys to Waffle House for breakfast. This would mean that I was the only one in the house. Oh glorious silence. I could do exactly what I wanted to do, which was…nothing!!! YAAAAAAAY!

Much to my surprise, when they came home the hubs said, “Here’s the game plan for the day…” Ah-hem, wait just a minute! Pause! STOP! Time-out! This is my Pajama Pants Day! Just because the boys chose to bail does not mean that I have to.

I’m guessing you can imagine how that was received and what kind of response it elicited.

I begrudgingly went upstairs to get dressed, mumbling all the while about how everyone knows that I don’t change out of my pajama pants on Friday. It’s a known fact! I even pick Ri up from school…IN MY PAJAMA PANTS.

Only, Ri didn’t have school today and Chris was making an effort to spend some quality time together as a family. The last thing he needed was a grumpy wife!

Grumpy wives/mothers are the worst, aren’t they?!
When we are grumpy it tends to spread like wildfire to the outlying areas or people.
The saying “When mama Ain’t happy, Ain’t nobody happy!” is SO true.

This has definitely been something that I am trying to work on. Because 9 times out of 10 (ladies, please don’t send me any hate mail) we are grumpy over something so trivial that we cannot exactly remember what it was after a while so we dig up something else that we were pissed about in the past and use that to feed our pity-city (this is when it has extended way beyond the pity-pot and turned into a pity-city)

Anywho, my temperament is not one to stay grumpy so I did what any intelligent woman who was just pulled away from her coffee and pj’s would do… I went through the drive thru of my favorite Starbucks and ordered my drink. “May I please have an iced grande, soy, chai latte?” “Yes!” said the angelic voice on the other side of the speaker.

The fact that my 5 yr. old was yelling from the backseat “MAAAAAHHHHHMEEEEE, you can’t have that drink everyday! Remember?! Daddy said!” did not deter me. My response, “It could be so much worse Darling, but thank you for the reminder!”

Ahhhh, the first sip. I raised the straw to my lips and there it was… instant happiness! Isn’t that ah-may-zing?! Shallow, yes. But no less amazing.

We then met Chris at the car rental place and he took over driving, thus allowing me to lean my head back, feel the warmth of the sun penetrate my skin while hanging my arm out the window and enjoying the coolness of a Fall morning.

Wait… what was I irritated about before?!

Oh yeah, pajama pants. Right!

All of that irritation seemed to just melt away with the warm sunshine on my skin.

Not too long after my awakening to the fact that I was, once again being completely selfish, we pulled up to the Chattahoochee Nature Center. NO ONE WAS THERE! YES! As much as I love being around people 99.99% of the time, I do not like crowds.

We got out of the car and felt the breeze mixing with the sunshine, and the sound of the leaves dancing and the water glistening and reflecting the blue sky…when the serenity of the moment was broken by my 5 yr. old saying, “Daddy, look! The trees are dropping their leaves so that they can be necked!” “Naked?” he replied. “Yeah, necked! That’s what mommy said.”

“Um, come on boys, let’s get going.”, I said.

We started down a path towards the river walk and it was as if we have entered our own world. Everything was working together to create the perfect setting.

“For what?” you might ask.

For exploration of course.

If there is one thing that I am certain of and am learning more and more everyday, it’s that we all need exploration (especially boys). The chance to look at the beauty and listen to the wonder of nature. An escape from the monotony of our everyday.

We need to be reminded that we are created in the image of a great God and that, no matter how breathtaking parts of the world around us seem, we are all the more breathtaking to Him.

Boys don’t just need to explore, they need adventure.

A patch of dark sand or dirt may look completely ordinary, even a little unappealing to us gals, but to a boy, he wants to get his hands in it, feel it between his fingers, stomp around and look at his footprints. To him, this is cause for celebration as he calls everyone over and says, “LOOK! Look at the footprint I made! That’s MY foot!”

Oh to have that childlike wonder! I needed to be reminded of just how precious it is! And the reminder needs to come in boy language, the language of my sons. Otherwise, I see it as just another patch of dirt.

We continued on… over bridges, up hills, over rocks and protruding tree roots. All the while picking up little treasures along the way.

“Mommy, look at the acorn I found for you! Isn’t it pretty?! You keep that part and I’ll keep the top!”, said my 5 year old. And then he was off again.

The boys ran and climbed, skidded and jumped. They were getting so dirty! WHO CARES! Let them be boys!

In an excerpt from John Eldrige’s book, Wild at Heart, he says “The recipe for fun is pretty simple raising boys: add to any activity an element of danger, stir in a little exploration, add a dash of destruction, and you’ve got yourself a winner. The way they ski is a perfect example. Get to the top of the highest run, point your skis straight downhill and go, the faster the better. And this doesn’t end with age; the stakes simply get higher.” 

I wholeheartedly agree! It took me a while to get there…and those who know me well would shake their heads in agreement.

There is nothing better, as a mother, than watching my boys be exactly what God created them to be.
I don’t know what their future holds or what they will choose as a career. But what I do know is that, for now, they are living out God’s purpose by just being boys!

When I am not hindering them, that is!

Moms of boys, let’s not hinder them anymore. Let’s not project ourselves onto them or insist that they look through freshly cleaned feminine lenses more than mud splattered goggles.

Don’t get me wrong, there is a time to teach them about girls, how to treat them, protect them and love them…how differently we see life. There will be a time for relationship advice. That time is not now.

In the book Captivating, Staci Eldridge says,  “A woman is a warrior too. But she is meant to be a warrior in a uniquely feminine way. Sometime before the sorrows of life did their best to kill it in us, most young women wanted to be a part of something grand, something important.”

In another part of the book she says, “We desire to possess a beauty that is worth pursuing, worth fighting for, a beauty that is core to who we truly are. We want beauty that can be seen; beauty that can be felt; beauty that affects others; a beauty all our own to unveil.”

Here’s the deal… if those of us raising boys will let them experience life the way God intended and those of us raising girls (I fall into both categories) will protect their hearts while allowing them to figure some things out on their own, we might just have some incredible adults when they grow up.

Wives, we need to understand this too. The men that God has given us, still have this desire. The more we let them be who they were created to be, the closer we get to their heart.

If they want to play football in the mud or go out and catch fish on a hook or hunt for wild game, we must be willing to let them do that. If they want to occasionally slip outside and pee in the backyard (this is how I potty trained both my boys. Sorry neighbors) LET THEM. What’s the harm in it?!

It’s when we (meaning all of us, society, etc.) stifle the man they are trying to become by constantly chastising the boy they so desperately need to be, that they end up years later feeling like something is missing, but they don’t quite know what it is.

My prayer, for my beloved warriors, is that I will be the enhancer of their becoming who God created them to be. That I will develop and shape them into wise, strong, well-rounded, Godly men. That I will appreciate all that they can teach me about life.

A few weeks ago, while I was engrossed in my laptop, after asking me for the 3rd time to come outside, my 5 year old said, “Mommy, you don’t play enough.”

Well boys, that’s going to change. Starting now.

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