“What are little boys made of? Snips of snails, and puppy dogs tails. That’s what little boys are made of!”
Even way back in the early 19th century, people knew boys were gross. We joke about boys being balls of noise with dirt on them, wild animals or, just plain wild. I’d heard the stories and laughed along with friends who’d talk about how full on their sons are, while their vacant eyes, the eyes of someone who’s seen too much, stared off into the distance.
Nothing could have prepared me for a 3-year-old boy, so I’m writing this as a tale of caution. A PSA if you will. If you’re expecting a baby and there’s a chance it could be a boy…read on. And thank me later. The following is my experience so far.
Boys discover their penises at an early age, and they never forget they’re there. EVER.
Our morning routine always starts with Luke taking off his pull up, checking that his willy is still there before announcing to all who will listen that it survived the night. He sprawls on the couch, eating a sandwich with one hand while his other is buried deep in his pants, resting gently on his beloved. He stretches it in the bath and calls me in to see how long it is. He dangles it in his food. Or my food. He’s even been known to draw stripes on it in pen then advertise proudly that his willy is a tiger.
On any given Saturday, our house closely resembles a WWE ring. Luke loves wrestling and he’s bloody good at it. He’s never watched it on TV, but that doesn’t stop him from piledriving and powerslamming with the best of them. His favourite move right now seems to be the diving elbow drop, which never fails to get me square in the boob. I’m constantly covered in bruises and as a result, I have ruled that wrestling is now and forever a daddy/son game. Luke and Joe wrestle daily. Luke initiates it by asking “wanna wrestle?” Joe usually answers by picking him up and throwing him over his shoulder onto the bed. One thing you can always count on…it ends with one of them farting on the other. Which brings me to my next point…
Farting, pooping and sneaky wees
It goes without saying that farts are hilarious. Pooing has become a competitive sport and I expect you’ll see Luke representing New Zealand at the 2028 Olympics. Big things are coming from Luke, just ask the neighbours who often hear him shrieking “I’M FIIIIIINISHED….COME AND SEE HOW BIG IT IS!!”
Sneaky wees is both what it sounds like, and also the complete opposite. Sneaky wees is supposed to be hiding behind a bush or tree to take a leak. Sneaky wees is NOT standing in a courtyard of a fancy café, surrounded by ladies who lunch, willy out and yelling “MUMMY! I’M DOING SNEAKY WEES!”
This one is definitely on me. And I’m #sorrynotsorry. Let me set the scene. Luke has set up his train tracks in his room and is happily playing away. I walk past his bedroom and hear him mutter “for fuck’s sake” Oh, Jesus Christ. Which is, incidentally, another curse Luke enjoys throwing around when something inconveniences him. The first time he swore, we howled with silent laughter behind his back, shoulders shaking and tears streaming down our faces. Points to him for using it in context and for not using it for attention seeking purposes. He’s never sworn out loud, always under his breath. And I’ve had no complaints from preschool yet soooooo…
My son is gross. He’s always dirty and obsessed with his willy. He swears and shouts. He sings ‘Old MacDonald’ screamo style. He’s not gentle with toys and told me I’d never marry because I had a fat tummy and didn’t wear enough hair clips. He has two settings, 100% or asleep. When he’s awake he’s Hulk smashing his way through my house and leaping from couch to couch. He seems to have lost the ability to hear in the last 6 weeks and I’m sick of constantly repeating myself. He does the opposite of what you tell him and worst of all, he makes me chase him. I hate running unnecessarily and he knows this.
When he’s asleep, I sit and watch as his eyes flutter and his chest rises and falls with every breath. I no longer sit in his room and dream of more children. One and this mama is done. Luke may be a handful. Hell, he’s three or four at times! But he’s sweet and loving. He can be gentle and caring. He tells me he loves me daily and will stop singing in the car to tell me that I’m doing “good driving mama!” He has time for his friends and even more time for his family. He loves to dance and listen to music.
While I complain to anyone who’ll listen that I’m exhausted (which I am), I’m also madly in love with my messy little noise maker. He’ll be 4 in June and I’m excited, albeit nervous as hell, to discover more about my Luke, the little firecracker. Tomorrow morning (around 5.20am), he’ll sneak into my bedroom with his sheepy and ask for a cuddle until the sun comes up. I’ll send him through to his dad’s room for an extra 5 minutes but will lie there, waiting for him to come back through, climb into my bed and lie still for all of 2 minutes. Then, with a well-placed knee to the groin and a body slam to make sure I really am awake, our adventure will begin all over again.
So yeah, boys are hard, but one day Luke will be a pimply, moody little horndog who smells like a mixture of Lynx Africa and sweat and I’ll look back at these days fondly, a glass of Jameson and dry in my hand and a tear in my eye. Not because I’m emotional, but because the little shit left his bedroom door open again and the stench of teenage boy is permeating through the house.