The Muppets sat at the dinner table tonight munching on pizza and chatting about their days. The middle Muppet had enjoyed his swimming day in PE, the youngest had a new bruise forming on his knee to share and the oldest was explaining what he had to do for homework.
We started talking about some of the High School and Middle School teams competing in a tournament at the school. The oldest was telling us that his teachers husband coached the basket ball, and that our Associate Principals wife was the assistant coach. The middle Muppet pipped in “Mrs. D is good at sports she is a Tom Girl.” His comment caught me off guard since I had never really used that term before and I asked him why he thought she was a Tom Girl. He smiled at me “Well mum, she is really, really good at sports and stuff.” I thought for a moment “What else makes you a Tom Girl?” I asked “Would Mummy be considered a Tom Girl?” The middle guy burst in to giggles “No Mum, you are not at all a Tom Girl, you don’t like sports and not to be rude but you like to sit on the couch a lot!” The other two Muppets joined in the giggle fest “Also Tom Girls don’t like floofy things or pink stuff” the Middle guy added. “You know” began the oldest Muppet “Mum used to play cricket or base ball… or something… um Tee-Ball when she she was a kid, so she likes to play sports”
I smiled at the oldest guy, there was no point in trying to impress him at this point. “You know what Mummy’s favorite part about Tee-Ball was?” I asked. All three Muppets shrugged their shoulders. I told them that I liked the fact that our team was named the Flamingos and that our jerseys had pink on them. The middle Muppet laughed “So I was right!” he declared. “You are not a Tom Girl” I shook my head “Most defiantly not!”
I told them that I like things that are sparkly, fluffy and floofy, things that are pink and purple and smell nice. I am terrible at sports, completely uncoordinated and I don’t like getting dirty. All three Muppets were in a fit of giggles at this point, I told them that God had given me little boys so that I could learn to love sports, bugs, dinosaurs, mud and farts. Every day the Muppets surprise me with some strange fact about animals, bring me presents of bits of glass and rocks and amaze me with just how dirty they can get. Our lives are never dull and I wouldn’t trade my stinky hockey playing boys for all the tutus and tiara’s in the world.
This morning the Muppets were super giggly. It was a nice change from the grumbling I usually hear, and the whining about not wanting to go to school, how tired they are and how “sick” they are.
I sat at my computer sipping my coffee and scrolling through social media listening to the three of them banter back and forth. A few seconds later I heard the youngest calling for me. “Mum….” He yelled from somewhere in the house. “Can you come check my bum!?” I rolled my eyes as I reluctantly got up
from my seat. We have gotten to the point where the youngest muppet can handle his bathroom duties 95% of the time, the other 5%… well they fall on me. The older two giggled at me as I walked to the bathroom. I poked the oldest muppet and told him that maybe this should be his job, he laughed it off and said “Not a chance!”
After I had helped the youngest with his business I walked back out to the living room. I told the muppets that I could not wait until the three of them had kids then they would be the ones dealing with dirty bums. The oldest laughed at me, and said “No way I am doing that!” I asked him what he was going to do when he had a baby of his own. “My wife will take care of that part of things” he said confidently “I will be too busy playing hockey!” I launched in to a huge speech about how it is not always the mothers job and that he would have to be a supportive husband and help his wife whether he was a professional hockey player or not! After a few minutes of my ranting he grabbed my hand and said “Mum stop! I’m 9, I am sure we can talk about this another time… like when I actually have kids!” I laughed and gave him a hug, he was right. We had all the time in the world for that discussion.
I gave him a kiss on the head and whispered in his ear “You know there was one thing you could do for me” he looked at me suspiciously “You can encourage the youngest guy to exclude me from bathroom duties!” He gave me a thumbs up and told me he would work on that one for me.
For the past few years the older two muppets have participated in swimming units at school in their PE classes. The youngest muppet was incredibly upset when he found out that his class was not going to be doing swimming and that he would have to wait until kindergarten to be able to join in the fun. Last week he brought home a letter from his PE teacher about starting his swimming unit and excitedly handed it to me with a smile on his face.
I was speaking to a colleague this past week about her son and his swimming unit, her little guy is in the same year at the youngest muppet but his PE class had been swimming since the end of September. She told me how they sat down and talked about appropriate behaviour in the change room and what he could do to change if he didn’t want anyone to see him. I told her that was something that I had never discussed with my boys. But I figured it was a conversation that I needed to have with the youngest muppet since he runs around my house naked slapping the other two muppets in the butt and doesn’t seem to have a shred of modesty.
I watched him last night after his bath trot naked down the stairs, jump on the couch and stick his butt in the middle muppets face all while giggling. I figured now was a good a time as any to have this talk. I asked him to put on his pants and helped him with his shirt (another piece of clothing that seems to never stay on that kid) and sat him down on the couch. I told him that tomorrow he would be starting swimming in PE, I showed him his swimming bag and asked him if he knew how to put on his swimming cap and goggles. Once we were done with that I cut to the chase.
I explained to the youngest muppet that he had to be good in the changing room, he looked at me a little confused and the oldest muppet pipped up. “She means not running around like a naked animal, or poking peoples butts… that kinda stuff” he said. The youngest guy started to giggle, but the middle muppet grabbed his hand and said “This is serious business you can’t misbehave or be inappropriate at school like you are at home or you might get kicked out!” I stifled a giggle and watched the older two muppets continue to lecture their little brother. When they were done I thanked both of them for their help, the oldest muppet smiled at me and told me not to worry the youngest guy would be fine.
I packed the swimming gear in the youngest guys backpack and we all made our way upstairs to get ready for bed. I pulled out clothes for the next morning and went to pop my head in to the bathroom to make sure teeth were being brushed properly. There were a lot of giggles and yells coming from the bathroom and when I reached the door I found the three of them laughing, poking and farting on each other. I stood in the door way and rolled my eyes and the ridiculousness of boys. The muppets all jumped in to bed still giggling, I told them it was time to calm down and gave them each a hug and a kiss. The oldest muppet kissed me and then said “You know Mum you only said he couldn’t be inappropriate at school, not at home” I laughed and gave him a squeeze and the three muppets settled down for the night.
As I closed the door I could hear the whispers and giggles of the three of them sharing their little stories and inside jokes. I know that there is no way that I can control the ridiculous boy behavior in my house (most of you have met my husband poor boys don’t stand a chance) so I guess I will have to continue to remind them about what we can and can not do outside our home.
For all you Mums of boys out there you are not alone! 😉