Yesterday I watched my ten year old son roll around on a snow covered trampoline. He was talking to his old Power Ranger action figures. I think he was pretending there were landmines in the snow. It seemed to me the Power Rangers kept stepping on explosives because he would throw them up in the air with a dramatic flair and their arms and legs would fly off. He was playing.
It occurred to me as I watched the Power Rangers dying that “little boy hood” is just a tiny window. Around the age of three they go from babies to boys. And at age twelve they turn into “dudes”.
“Little boy hood” is when they play with fierce abandonment. They conquer worlds, create complex universes and like blowing everything up. They are different from little girls at this age because they are not so fascinated by the complicated gears of relationships and appearances. They just want to have fun, they run at trees thinking they can do a back flip, they jump on pogo sticks in the snow and crawl under porches looking for grubs and lizards.
During “little boy hood” they still say one of my favorite phrases in the world, “Mom, come look at this!” Last night Sandor and his friend Kyle said this when they wanted to show me a you tube video of a real Big Foot in Arizona, when they figured out how to jump off the deck backwards and land cleanly on their feet and when Sandor thought he had a splinter in his foot. It turned out to be dirt.
My husband never says with sparkling excitement, “Diana come look at this.”
When my daughters say that, it’s because they want me to look at their make up or hair. But during “little boy hood” they are old enough to find amazing stuff and still young enough to want to share it with their old mom.
It only lasts for a little while, then it’s gone. So I’ve decided I’ll make an effort to jump at the opportunity when he says, “Mom come look at this!” What could I possibly be doing that’s more important? Watching CSI, doing the dishes, folding laundry? I want to share in his excitement and and discoveries while I can. And who know, maybe it’s the real Big Foot on Youtube!