Sometimes an offhanded remark sticks like super glue. Though the person who said it probably didn’t give it much thought, the person it’s being said to does.
When I was pregnant with my son, my husband and I agreed we didn’t want to learn the gender of the baby, seeing it as one of the most amazing surprises possible. As the cliché goes, what really mattered to us was that the child was healthy—boy or girl—it didn’t matter.
One day a coworker said to a very pregnant me, “You were meant to be the mom of boys.” Maybe it was hormones, but for whatever reason, her comment didn’t really sit well with me. What did she mean? I wouldn’t be a good mom for a girl? What if God blessed me with a girl? Why wouldn’t I be a good mom for a girl? Okay…it was probably the hormones coupled with my own special brand of sensitivity.
But those words stayed with me.
It is very safe to say that I have never been considered a girly girl. Given the choice to play basketball or talk fashion, throw me the ball. To this day…throw me the ball. Shopping? Except on rare occasions, I’d rather eat my own hair than walk endlessly through the mall trying to find the right boots to go with my leggings. (So far, I don’t even own leggings, so I guess it’s smart not to buy those boots.) Maybe that’s why she said I was meant to be the mom of boys? Because I’m not girly enough? Can’t tomboys be good moms to girls? And is a grownup tomboy a tomman? It shouldn’t be that easy to doubt myself.
And why is it that we so often characterize what being a girl or woman is by these stereotypical concerns? There’s so much more to thriving as a woman than looking good. If I had a daughter, I would certainly strive to raise her to understand that.
Ultimately, I knew that if God blessed us with a little girl, that’s exactly who we were meant to have. After all, this little one was already a miracle baby for us. Diagnosed with endometriosis in my mid-20s and having had a few surgeries for it, my getting pregnant at all was an amazing, wonderful blessing.
Even though I knew all this, I must admit I did still wonder what my coworker meant by that remark. When she said it to me, I asked, “Wait…what do you mean by that? Why do you think I am meant to be the mom of boys?” She simply replied, “You just are.” Her cryptic response obviously didn’t give me any insight. I still didn’t understand.
But then I had him.
My husband and I welcomed our son into the world on a lovely May afternoon. He was healthy and beautiful and we literally felt the blessing of his entering our lives. He was the perfect fit.
As the days and years wore on, I understood what my coworker meant. Though I absolutely know that if I had a daughter I would fulfill her needs and encourage and nurture her to be her true self, I recognize that my “groove” is with my son.
God knew exactly the one for Mike and me.
He knew that the little soul that was given to us to care for should be a deep-thinking yet scatterbrained, sensitive but sarcastic, kind-hearted and sometimes knuckleheaded boy. He knew that we would understand his version of silly (well, mostly…) and that we would love him thoroughly and unconditionally forever.
More than being the “mom of boys,” God knew that I was meant to be the mom of him.
This week marks another anniversary of life with our miraculous, unique, meant-for-us blessing. Happy birthday to our not-so-little-anymore man. You are fearfully and wonderfully made…you fill our hearts as only you can do, and we couldn’t possibly be any more thankful that you came into our lives. We love you tons and tons forever and always.
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14
All photos are my own.
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