Today’s post is written by a friend that I first met in grade 6 many moons ago, Tabitha Avery. Tabitha was my go to when I needed an essay or other paper edited in high school
Raising Boys: The Penis Chronicles presents, “Unchartered Territory – No Girls for Me!”
I always knew I wanted children and I was adamant that I would only have boys – no girls for me! Girls were terrible creatures: bossy, moody, mean, and fickle. Of course, I knew this from experience, being all the above myself. On the other hand, boys were easy. Boys were rough & tumble, stoic and steady.
When my now ex-husband and I learned we were pregnant we chose to forgo learning the sex of the baby while in utero. Instead we opted to be surprised when the day came. Strangely, as my pregnancy progressed I became fearful that I was indeed carrying a boy. I secretly wished for a girl. Holding that secret tightly I never expressed my change of heart out loud, and I never knew what caused it. Regardless, I was beyond thrilled when the doctor announced, “it’s a girl!”
She was a quiet baby. She never fussed much and she was always watchful and full of smiles. I waited with no small amount of trepidation for the terrible two’s, the tantrums, basically any display of temper. Nothing! She exited the toddler years without as much as a scribble on the wall. I was almost disappointed. Where were the outbursts? Where were the wails of frustration? Where were the small fists balled up in anger and coupled with tears coursing down a tiny red face? This was behavior I knew how to deal with, but the worst I ever got was a child who gave up on learning how to use scissors immediately after trying once and failing. She returned to it four months later somehow a total pro (she gets that from her Dad – perfection or nothing).
Over the last eight years the only time we have seen any kind of behavior that isn’t rock steady is when my girl is faced with a perceived failure. Whether it’s learning to tie her shoes, or an art project that wasn’t executed as she expected, or learning new dance steps, if she feels that she has failed she loses her shit. It’s a slow loss, but it always happens the same way. First comes a sound of frustration from deep within followed by physical distance from the offending personal disaster and then – and this is the best one – a controlled cry. She will inform me that she needs to “get it out” as she leans in for a hug and proceeds to cry her heart and soul out for no more than four minutes. Four minutes every time! This both impresses me and scares the bejeezes out of me; what in the hell kind of kid has that kind of control? I don’t know if I’m raising an incredibly self-aware person, or a horrible control-freak in training. Only time will tell. Meanwhile, I am in uncharted territory when it comes to what I know about little-girl behavior. She isn’t bossy or moody.
I just hope she isn’t saving it all up for puberty!
By Tabitha Avery – 2018
Despite doing nothing to further her career, Tabitha still believes that she’ll be a wildly famous actress someday. In the meantime, Tabitha lives in cottage country and she describes having a love/hate relationship with the area. She spends her time as a mother co-parents her daughter, Kat, with her ex-husband who is still her best friend.