Tuesday, January 24, 2012

being a girl mom

In the past, I've heard mommy friends describe themselves as either a 'girl mom' or a 'boy mom' and I didn't really get it until recently.  One of my friends just found out she's having her third son.  I was a little sad for her, because I think all moms need the experience of having a girl, but she's thrilled because she claims she's 'totally a boy mom.' 

When I was pregnant with Morgan, I couldn't wait to find out what I was having.  I wanted a boy so bad!  Boys just seemed easier...less money on clothes, less drama (HA not really in MY family...), just easier all around.  Plus I think many of us still subconsciously go through that medieval panic of producing the male heir of the family.  When I found out I was having a girl, I was disappointed.  And then I felt guilty for feeling disappointed.  My husband didn't care at all; he was happily sending his friends 'it's a girl!' texts. 

I vowed to keep everything neutral.  I'm not much of a girly girl to begin with.  My favorite colors are blue and green.  My closet is a sea of black and brown and gray.  High heels hurt, therefore why wear them?  Daily makeup includes mascara and chapstick.  I like to hike and ski; I used to whitewater kayak and still go whitewater rafting.  I grew up with 2 brothers in the country.  We played outside with mud up to our chins. 

After my daughter was born, we dressed her in dinosaur sleepers.  "Oh how cute, what's his name?"  My husband got really upset that people confused our baby girl for a boy.  She didn't really have hair until she was 2, so that didn't help the situation, and it took me a long time to learn how to dress a girl. 

My mom did not dress me in frilly cute dresses when I was young (and I always wanted them!!)  She always picked sensible comfortable clothing.  However; with her first granddaugther, she's going nuts, finding some of the cutest little outfits for her to wear!  And hairbows!  And shoes!  And Morgan LOVES her fancy clothes, and her hairbows, and her shoes.  She's 2 and she already begs for mascara.  I just know she's going to be sneaking makeup to preschool to put on in the bathroom.

Having a girl isn't just about all the cute clothes and accessories...it also means just about everything she owns is pink and probably glittery.  I painted her bedroom 'aloe vera' which is a very light bright green, because I knew that she would have enough pink accents once all of her toys took over.  I avoided it for as long as I could, but Morgan eventually became obsessed with the Disney princesses.  My husband and I encourage some 'boy toys'...she got an awesome train table for Christmas, but sometimes Disney princesses invade the tracks (Cinderellazilla?)  She also has a tool bench with lots of tools...but she's currently using the pliers to 'snip snip cut mommies hair' as I type this. 

She loves all that glitters and sparkles...'oooOOOOoooo sparklies!'
At one point I realized that having a girl means everything will always be covered in a layer of glitter.  Where does all this glitter come from?  Princess dresses...glittery coloring pages...who knows, sometimes I think it just comes out of her ears.  Glitter is in my car, on my couch, in my fridge.  It's not very cooperative and is as stubborn as that single Cheerio that refuses to be vacuumed.  Sometimes one of the cats will come into the room stretching after a long nap and he will be covered in glitter...or I'll be listening to my husband trying to tell me something but I can't take him seriously because he somehow has glitter on his forehead. 

Having a girl means dealing with constant drama and moods.  Morgan will sometimes wake up mad at the world (seriously, what does a 2 year old have to be mad about after 10 hours of sleep?) and I know to keep the cats out of her path for a few hours.  Or she will wake up giddy AFTER first waking up grouchy.  The other morning she woke up at 6 - hateful, cranky, mean.  We finally got her back to sleep (in our bed) and a few hours later she woke up laughing, rolled over and slapped my husband in the back, then rolled over to poke me in the eye.  I couldn't figure out which one I was...Larry, Moe, or Curly, but was happy she was in a good mood! 

Everything is a battle.  Each night I fight to get in her the bathtub.  Then I fight to get her out of the bathtub.  Sometimes when we fix her one of the five food items she will eat, she will scream 'EWWWW!' and run away, but if we leave it on her little table, she will eventually come back and eat it.  She has feelings and they get hurt.  If she asks you to color with her, you better color, or she's going to cry for half hour like her heart is breaking.  When she gets in trouble (which is often), she hates being yelled at - so much that we usually have to repeat ourselves about 5 times before she stops what she's doing, and then she cries those huge tears and runs to her room where she dives face down in her bed to cry until she eventually comes back looking for a lap (usually mommy's) for comfort. 

Yes, she drains us.  Emotionally and physically.

But we love her.  She's the funniest little kid, very creative, very rotten.  She's already learned that begging alone won't necessarily earn what you want, but if you add the cute little voice, tilt your head with your hands under your cheek, and bat your eyes...ding ding ding, we have a winner!!  Melts hearts!  And she's learned (especially with mommy...yeah, I'm a sucker...) that sometimes if you get yelled at, if you give mommy's head a big hug and give her lots of kisses, it helps her to forget very fast that you were digging your plastic screwdriver into her brand new coffee table. 

I've been told that my kid is spoiled.  I don't think so.  We do have rules.  I control what she eat, what she watches on TV, what she plays with, how she acts.  She's actually very well behaved compared to a lot of children we see her age during our outings.  She never runs away from us.  She never fights us about being in a stroller or in a shopping cart.  She never screams or throws a huge fit in public (she does get fussy sometimes, but she's 2!)  She waves and says hi to absolutely everybody and says 'awww pretty baby!' to all children ages 5 and under.  She always holds our hand and doesn't struggle.  We don't believe in spanking or smacking hands unless it's an extreme situation where she's done something really bad and she KNOWS she's done something bad.  I'm not saying that I don't believe in spanking at all, but I think babies and toddlers are too young to understand the punishment.  We noticed that the more we spanked her, the more violent she become towards us, the cats, and other children.  We were teaching her that hitting was okay if you thought somebody was doing something wrong, so if a child steals a toy, then hit that kid and get it back!  Some children respond better to spanking, but it didn't work for ours.  Honestly, I think some of these little brats NEED a good swat to the rear (or maybe their parents need it instead...)

Now I'm 16 weeks pregnant and everybody keeps saying 'oh I hope you have a boy this time!' but I'm not sure if I want one or not!  I'm so used to having a girl, I won't know what to do with a boy.  Boys seem so gross...and rough.  I don't mind getting dirty as long as I can wash all the dirt off afterwards.  Morgan has been awesome...she doesn't like getting her hands dirty, not even with food.  For her first birthday she snarled at her cake until I shoved her hands into it and then she cried and hated me.  Those are some great pictures.  She is a very clean eater.  If something falls off her plate she goes crazy and says 'ewww messy!' until it's cleaned up, and then she can continue eating.  She doesn't like bugs or creepy crawly things...and neither do I!  We both run from frogs and worms and yell for daddy if there's a spider.  If I have a boy I can't deal with him bringing frogs in the house or putting worms in his pocket.  Or having a muddy face and peanut butter hands. 

Plus I have tons of girls clothing in storage...and all these pink glittery girl toys.  It would just make sense to have another girl.

I've been way more nauseated during this pregnancy.  The heart rate has been around 150 every time.  It's probably a stinky ol' boy.  Morgan's heart rate was always over 170.  Girls are more high strung, even before they are born.

Right now Morgan is wearing a purple tutu, Cinderella shoes, broken tiara, and safety goggles from her tool set and she's begging to color...with glitter crayons of course. 

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