No, I’m Not ‘Trying’ for a Girl

If I had one dollar for every time someone saw me with my three boys and said something like, “Oh, bless your heart. You’ve got your hands full,” or “Wow! You’re outnumbered, are you going to try for a girl?” Or my personal favorite, “It took my sister four boys before she got her girl.” Well, I’d be a millionaire.

Let me clarify before I go on – I am not easily offended, and I’m not offended when people ask variations of this question. Generally, I respond pleasantly and laugh it off. 

At the end of the day though, those questions and the question, “When are you going to have a baby?” are simply insensitive. 

Some people can’t have children, by zero fault of their own.

Some people don’t want to have children, by their own choice.

And some people, namely me, don’t want more children, or to try for a different gender.

I implore people to stop asking these things of others. You could never know someone’s personal situation, and at the end of the day it’s not really anyone else’s business or choice.

By asking me if I’m going to “try for a girl” it implies that I am, or should be, displeased with the three amazing boy humans I received. 
I adore my boys. I’m not trying for a girl. Plus, I have Mackenzie out here, who came ready-made.

I’m not starved for estrogen in my house or ‘missing’ some grand mother-daughter element.

I get to enjoy my humans – who are pretty fantastic, might I add.

This idea of Boys vs. Girls suggests that there is some type of specific value assigned to one gender that the other gender lacks, and that gap should be filled to appease parental needs. For what? Because I’m a woman I should have a girl to pass on my adoration for makeup and the color pink? Or because my husband is a man he should have boys to fulfill his desire to pass on a love for fishing and all things blue?

My husband loves to cook and is the primary cook in our house. He also appreciates a good chick flick. 

I love to build things and play with power tools, and have assembled most of our IKEA furniture. I also enjoy politics and can hold my own with discussions.

“Gender-Norms” only exist if you allow them to.

My boys love dolls and makeup and trucks and video games, because they’ve been encouraged to explore their interests, whatever they may be, so long as they don’t harm others. They appreciate watching musical theater and then turning around and getting dirty. 

They have been taught to know the value of a person, that is not specific to being a woman or a man. They enjoy their individual worlds regardless of gender biases and are full of compassion and understanding.

So no, I’m not going to “try for a girl” – because gender on its own doesn’t bring additional love into a persons life or family – humanity and people do, regardless of their sex.

Please be sensitive when you ask these questions, lovelies. We should give back all the love to others.

Good Sunday vibes, y’all. 

Where Have You Been?!

So, funny story…

I’ve been hella MIA.

I wish I had a really cool reason, like I’ve been traveling the world or tucked away in some hidden Air BNB finishing my novel…but I don’t.

The truth is – I lost my mojo, baby. I lost my motivation, my inspiration and my control all in one swoop. I hadn’t written in months. My life swam by me in a blur. I was drowning within myself, and I was painfully aware of it. I would wake up in the morning and within two hours, be ready to sleep again. I was emotionally exhausted all the time, anxious, on edge, introverted. All things that were just…unlike me.

It’s never easy to sit down and look at yourself in the mirror and ask the question, “What is going on with me?” But I had to. I realized that life is far too short to get sucked so far into yourself that you can’t see beyond the door. So I did.

Backstory-time.

I have willingly chosen not to pursue medication for the majority of my adult anxiety/OCD journey. Mainly because I’m terrified of medicine, but also because I wanted to learn practical coping methods for myself first. Turns out, for the most part – I could, and had been, managing my anxiety and OCD on my own.

Until recently.

For whatever reason, unbeknownst to me, my normal tools weren’t working. Meditation, nope. Yoga, negative. Breathing exercises, nada. The list goes on and on with the things I’ve tried. I was falling into habits that I hadn’t done in years. I caught myself picking at my cuticles until they bled, chewing my lip until I could run my tongue along a visible swollen spot. The tipping point was when I realized I couldn’t pull myself out of my room.

I woke up on the morning of the Equality March – something I had been looking forward to for months. I knew. I knew instantly that it was an off day. My fan was so loud I swore it was a helicopter taking off when I woke up. The sun seemed unyieldingly bright behind closed blinds, even though it was a cloudy morning. My heart raced and my hands trembled when I thought about leaving the house. Fear consumed me. It consumed me to the point that I felt like walls were falling in and I couldn’t breathe.

That day – for the first day in nearly twelve years – I let fear trap me in my own home and in my own body.

I missed the march. I missed standing up for something that I have always fought for.

And I said, ‘enough’.

I talked to my doctor about everything, what I was experiencing, feeling and doing to combat all of it. There were blood tests and sleep analysis questions. Finally, the step I never thought I’d be willing to entertain came up – medication. My doctor was patient and listened and knew that I was afraid and she talked me through it.

I thought back to the march. To what I had missed, to what I could miss in the future – and I got the hell on board with it pretty quickly, and I feel confident about my decision.

I say all of that to say this – It’s okay to need, and ask for, help. 

It’s okay to not have it together all the time. It’s okay to not be okay. It doesn’t mean you’re weak or unable to manage, I promise. You don’t have to suffer in silence or try to fight a battle on your own. There are people, sometimes even total strangers, who support you – no matter what your journey may look like. Promise.

One thing I swore in the beginning was that this blog would be a safe space for all of my readers, and I felt like it would be unfair for me to not use it as mine as well.

So that’s where I have been. I’ve been healing and learning and fighting myself and repairing.

I’ve been feeling more inspired and there’s new content, series and funny stories on the way!

Thank you, lovelies. For being a community and a support system I never knew I needed until I had you!

The Things I Want My Boys to Know About Women and Relationships

I started thinking about the things I want my boys to know about women and by extension, relationships. I journeyed down this particular path after my oldest tiny-human brought home the dreaded permission slip. You know the one, the one that I have to sign allowing permission for the school to teach him about…puberty.

They also teach them about the opposite gender’s reproductive system and body changes, which made me incredibly nervous. Not for the fact that he is going to see boobies along with the dreadful Texas Longhorn-ish photo we all know too well depicting our uteruses; but more because we as women, are so much more complex than our reproductive organs.

There are things I want my boys to know about women that go beyond physical changes. I pride myself on being a mother who teaches my boys to be open minded, emotional, freethinking men. I don’t want them to have a misogynistic view of the world and I don’t want them to feel confused by women or relationships.

And so, in the midnight hours, I started jotting down my list. It grew from my thoughts on women to my thoughts on relationships as well.

  • All women are beautiful. It does not matter what size they are or what color skin they have. Repeat after me, all women are beautiful.
  • Beauty is also on the inside. Trust me when I say that not everyone has this quality, beware. Guard your heart, but stay open to love.
  • Women are not delicate creatures. Women are tough, strong-minded and powerful. It is okay to have powerful women in your life. Encourage them to stay that way and support them, always.
  • Women are EMOTIONAL – and that is okay. Remember, it is okay for you to show those same emotions.
  • Women are not always right. Admitting that in text on a public forum tastes a lot like crow. You are not always right either. Know when to stand your ground and know when to stop an argument.
  • Chivalry will never be outdated. It will always be appreciated so don’t let this wane, even as you grow with another person.
  • In relationships you become another person’s rock. But they should also be yours. Supporting one another is key.
  • Relationships are hard. Like, really hard. It takes two people working day and night to make it last. Don’t give up on things easily, even if you might want to.
  • Lies are lies. No matter how small they may seem, lies and closed doors are toxic to a relationship. Stay open and communicate effectively with one another.
  • Be yourself and let your partner be their self. Accept both and remember you can never fully love someone else until you love yourself first.
  • One day you will say, “I love you,” to someone other than your relatives. ALWAYS mean it, and NEVER take it for granted. Don’t say it just to say it or because you have nothing else to say…there’s a word for those moments, and it’s supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

There it is. My motherly list of simple things I want my boys to know in these departments. At least these are the things I think are important right now. Like most things in my life, I expect this list to grow and change with the seasons, but for now, this will do just fine.

A bit of additional reading. I read a great article yesterday about the differences between mature and immature relationships (article linked here). I was proud to say that the Hubs and I fell into the ‘mature’ category. Yay for adulthood!