Nature versus nurture. Or something like it.November 9, 2010 at 5:30 am | Posted in motherhood, Parenting | 5 Comments
If I had to describe O, the way he is right now, it would be this.
His new fun activity with his friends at school and Mommy and Daddy at home is to “tackle.” He stands in a football-like stance, his legs spread, clapping his hands on his knees.
Then he runs at you, full speed, giggling. And grabs you around the neck in a hug. And then tries, with all his thirty-something pounds, to pull you down.
The point of the game, of course, is to fall over. Where he’ll announce gleefully, Hey! I am on TOP of you!
It is one of my favorite games to play with him.
Between the tackling, and the kicking a soccer ball, and the hitting of a baseball with a bat, and the catching and throwing, and the digging, and the cars and trucks and airplanes… and the WATCHING of the sports on TV… well, I am often amazed at how much of a stereotypical BOY he can be.
I keep trying to figure out if it’s something he’s organically grown into, or if it’s something that J and I unwittingly encourage, just because he’s a boy.
Because I try NOT to fall into the gender roles, where boys run and play and girls sit and play with stuffed animals. For my part, I was a tomboy who made my parents cut my hair when I was young so I could look more like a boy (with my purple bike with the flowered banana seat, but somehow I figured that a boy would ride a bike like that if it was the only alternative).
I didn’t want to force my kid into something he wasn’t. We have dress up clothes that include a tiara (for our wedding which I decided not to wear at the last minute) and beaded necklaces in O’s toybox in his room.
O has a play stove, with real pots and pans. And for a while, he’d pretend to grill dinner for me. He served me chicken and macaroni and cheese, mostly.
Now he prefers to use the wooden spoon as a drumstick and a top of a pot as a cymbal and march around, pretending to be in a band.
And he definitely loves his Bear, and now seems to have an interest in Maisy, the cow-shaped blanket my own mother bought him when we didn’t think we could find extras of Bear. (His Bear, actually, he’s named “Crying Bear.” Because there’s a little plastic piece near one of the eyes, which does actually make Bear look like he’s crying.)
But otherwise? He’s really shown no interest in his stuffed animals – even the one he made himself when he gave up his bink.
He’s just really into SPORTS, apparently. And not so much playing with dolls, or stuffed animals, or anything like that. (Yet, anyway.)
Given that I’ve never actually, you know, HAD a son before, I can’t tell you if this typical. And I’m not certain that J and I don’t subconsciously revert to gender roles, even though we don’t intend to.
It’s just one of the things I find fascinating about parenting.