"Mommy! Watch this!" I love those words. "Mommy! I show you!" I love those too. All of them melt my heart at least 1,000,000,000,000 a day (I'm not being facetious) . Ever since my son had his adenoids and tubes taken out, his vocabulary and hearing have become universally better! He uses sentences that contain 5-10 words. Now, they may not all be in the correct order, but you know he is trying.
Let's get to the topic of the day: When you 2-year old boy likes pink.
You may be thinking, "My little boy is NOT going to be liking the color pink in ANY way." But there will be some of you out there that say, "What's the big deal?"
My response: "It isn't." *sigh*
He is the epitome of little boy. It is all about CARS, TRUCKS, TRAINS, BASEBALLS, SOCCER BALLS, BASKETBALLS, CLUBS, BATS, BLOCKS, BARNYARD, AND...YEP, EVEN MUDDDDDDDDD!!!
However, as a single mom, my little boy also knows how to be sensitive, he also knows how to powder his face with cinnamon and wear high heels. You see, there are no men's clothing or shoes around our humble little abode. Really, I haven't had a man come to my house since my brother and dad stepped in last week to view my latest paintings. I haven't dated, so there isn't someone I wouldn't let into my sacred living area for my son to try on the male garb, and strut his stuff around the rooms.
Most mornings, he goes straight for his rain boots. It doesn't matter if it is raining or sunny, he loves his boots! When his uncle recently picked up a pair of big brown boots, my son was ecstatic! He paraded around with his boots while my brother wore his new boots. However, there are some mornings where I will hear the "clunk! clunk!" sound of my shoes walking down the hallway. Normally, he has the 3 sizes too big flip flops, but occasionally, I look back to see the "glowing face of pride" smile as he wobbles around in my high heels.
It's very humorous actually. He may or may not make it all the way down the hall before he trips, falls, or gives up. You can bet though, he will try again on a whim the next day! Does he think they are his shoes? No, he always shouts, "Mommy! Look! I wear your shoes!" The twinkle in his eye tells me that the innocence hasn't budged a bit. I smile and laugh, and then go about the day.
It's not just the shoes that other moms may balk at, but the response when you ask him his favorite color. "Pink!" He will respond proudly.
He hasn't grown up around many pink toys, mainly it is just the Play-Dos and the finger paints that incorporate the pinks. However, if you think about the color pink, it is an enticing color. It's bright, strong, and 'mommy wears it almost all the time!'
Historically, even starting a century ago, pink was the chosen color for boys. If you read in the Smithsonian magazine article: When did girls start wearing pink? , you will read that pre-WWI, "The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the
girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger color,
is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and
dainty, is prettier for the girl.” As I said, it's a strong color, and pops more to the eye. Gender-specific colors didn't become an issue until the 1940s.
This just keeps growing doesn't it? Well, besides the pink, my son will also have fun with mommy in the morning by brushing my make-up on. Of course I don't let him have a brush-full, but it doesn't bother me because I don't have store-bought make-up. I make my own. My foundation is a combination of cornstarch and cinnamon. Because of my acne-prone skin, I decided to place natural products on my face. As a facewash, I use raw honey, as a spot treatment, I use mixed oils. But, we can get into that on another day.
Now, during these times, I will remind my son that only girls wear make-up, but it doesn't bother me that he finds it fascinating. I like to see it as a gender-learning experience, and that he will make some woman very happy one day!
I did not write this toward any issue. This was not to discuss homosexuality or gender equality. It was an innocent blurb about why having a little boy who likes pink is ok, or that being a single mom with a little boy who wobbles around in her high heels is ok, or why he is curious between the difference between mommy and himself. He is at a curious stage, and it is wonderful! He is so excited very single day, and he will express is above and beyond.
Oh, my son also has great rhythm. He will hear a tune and start tapping his foot, or bobbing his head. I have considered dance...and why not? There are a number of men out there that contribute the ability to dance to their growing skills in athletics and academics. Livestrong,com has a simple, yet good article: The Benefits of Dance for Kids.
As a female, I always thought I had limits because I was a female. However, raising a boy, I see that more social limits are placed on boys. Boys are needing to seem "manly" and "strong", if they aren't they are wimps, nonathletic, pansy, and so on. I am an artist. I feel that empowering your sons to pursue their creative and imaginative sides does not encourage them to be nonathletic or nerdy, it simply gives them skills that many overlook and don't acquire because of social constraints. I have no doubt that my abilities in the arts and his endless exposure to the world of art history will inspire him to explore that world, but I also know that he will want to play sports and get dirty, rough, and tough.
Allow your children to explore the world without limiting or constraining based on your biased and tainted opinion of society and it's norms. Their innocence will not hinder their growth, but let it soar to new heights and possibilities. It will open doors that they otherwise may be too afraid to open. Don't let your first impulse be to balk at their decisions. Stop, take a look at how they are trying to explain it to you, or how they may see it through their eyes, and you will understand that the world does not control the growing mind. Knowledge is an experience and a gift, not all thirst for that. It is ok to let your children explore beyond their own understanding (in a safe environment, of course) because that is how they will ultimately form their own opinions and ideas. If too much stress and constraint is placed on them before they are allowed the discover, they are hindered in their growth and potential for greatness in all areas of life, not just the socially correct ones.
Much to our chagrin, our children are not "us". (No matter how many times we hear, "He's just like you when you were that age." or "He is like a little you!") They are their own person, their own individual, their own hinderers or encouragers. They can be taught to see the world the way you do, but they need to know that it is ok to become their own person also, as long as it encourages the positive growth of their place in humanity, finding themselves as individuals and a part of the ever-changing universe.
Like stars, we have potential to shine through the darkness, reaching to depths unknown, and carrying on our legacy for eons to come.