mothers and sons.

Sometimes I’m not sure if I’ve completely wrapped my head around the fact that we’re having a boy. I’m well aware that this life growing inside of me is a boy, but what does that mean exactly?

People keep telling me that boys are easier than girls, to which I always reply “but I AM a girl!” I know how to french braid and paint nails and tie the perfect bow! I also know how to bake chocolate chip cookies, take pictures at flattering angles, and place bandaids perfectly in between toes to avoid blisters when dancing in heels. I AM a girl. A girl’s girl, no less. How difficult could it be to impart wisdom to a daughter?

Boys on the other hand? I’m lost. I’m genuinely, totally and utterly lost. I don’t know how to drive a stick shift or build a tent. I hate red meat, have no interest in sports whatsoever, and can barely throw a football. Most days I’m scared to death of spiders and (don’t tell my dad) I can’t read a map to save my life. While Brett knows how to do most, if not all of those things, I can’t help but wonder sometimes: what is my role? Where do I fit in? What’s my place? What wisdom can I possibly share with this sweet baby boy?

Of course my role is to love him and support him wholeheartedly in everything he does. It’s my job to raise him to be an outstanding citizen, a good friend, a hard worker, and perhaps above all else, a loving husband to some lucky girl some day.

And maybe it’s as simple as that. Maybe Brett can teach him how to drive a stick shift, and the boy scouts can teach him how to build a tent, and while all of that is going on, I’ll teach him how to love his future wife. Maybe that can be my job. Maybe I’ll teach him how to be thoughtful with his actions and how to speak words of affirmation into her life. Maybe I’ll teach him how to buy “good” gifts and plan date nights and make her feel like the most beautiful girl in the world. Maybe, starting now, I should pray for God to help prepare his heart for the commitment, work, and unwavering love that marriage, and ultimately parenthood, will require of him.

Sex? I’ll leave that talk to daddy. But the rest I think I can cover.

I may not know how to read a map or use power tools, but I do know how to love. I know how to love hard and I know how to love well. If I can teach my baby boy how to do that, I think he’ll turn out okay. And thankfully, if all else fails, he’s got the greatest husband on the planet as a live-in role model. A husband who has made true sacrifices for me time and time again. If our son turns out to be half the husband that Brett has been to me, I’m fairly certain that his future wife is in for a lifetime of happiness.

All that being said, you’re welcome future daughter-in-law. You’re welcome.

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23 Responses to mothers and sons.

  1. Danielle says:

    Being the mother to a son is one of the best gifts God could have given me. Enjoy every second.

  2. Holly says:

    I love this post 🙂 I’m the third in a family of all girls – and although I’m not a girly girl by any means (to me, dressing up means wearing clean jeans!) – I had the same uncertainty you describe when I found out I was having a boy. I still make up names for construction equipment (“What’s that, Mommy?” “That’s a … a … THINGAMAJIG!”) and I don’t understand his fascination with burping and farting – but like Danielle said, being the mother to a son is one of the greatest gifts God could have given me 🙂

  3. Janna Haynes says:

    I, on the other hand, am scared to death that one day I might have a daughter. I am NOT a girlie girl, I hate ballet and cheerleading and always preferred a comfy pair of jeans to a dress. IF I have a daughter I can do her hair and show her how to put mascara on, but the rest is lost on me. Now if I have a son, we’ll play sports together and watch the UFC together. We’ll go on hikes, build projects with krazy glue and duck tape and camp out in the back yard. We’ll eat Spaghetti O’s straight out of the can and I’ll cheer him on like crazy at his first soccer game.

    All that said, I agree with you, that if my hypothetical son is half the man and husband MY husband is, he’ll be fine. Now if I have a daughter, the one thing I know I can teach her to do is love unconditionally and work every second to make her marriage the happiest relationship on earth.

  4. SushiMama says:

    I would like to suggest Emersyn for your future daughter in law, because I think you’ll do a phenomenal job of teaching your boy to love:)
    SushiMama´s last blog post ..Nursery progress

    • Ashlee says:

      I LOVE THE NAME EMERSYN!!! asdkfjalsdjflsdkj! I just heard it somewhere else this morning and could not stop thinking about how much I like it. Well done.

      I probably won’t be arranging marriages on this blog, but if that ever changes, you’ll be the first to know 😉

  5. Ruth says:

    you are going to have the sweetest baby boy, Ash! i can’t wait to meet him! xo.
    Ruth´s last blog post ..hipcooks west.

  6. A boy is a special gift and I am lucky to have one . I get to like all the superheros . Its a fun world.
    Julie@my5monkeys´s last blog post ..Sacrificial Magic Book Review

  7. Anna says:

    “BUILD” a tent. You’re killing me, Gadd. *PITCH* a tent.

    That said, you’ll be great. Duh.
    Anna´s last blog post ..Updates

  8. Mom says:

    Just look at what I have with Brett, Ashlee. He is the gift of a son and I could imagine nothing more with any daughter. I pray your little boy loves you as much as I feel loved by Brett. I am so proud of him as a husband and Dad to be and yes, you are welcome my daughter-in-law!

  9. Ashlee says:

    Oh Mitzie. I probably should have left you a public thank you on this post. THANK YOU! 😉

  10. Sarabell says:

    Aw, I just love this! My husband’s grandmother told me once, “Mothers don’t do their future daughter-in-laws any favors,” with regards to the way men can be sometimes. Luckily yours will probably disagree with that statement. =]
    Sarabell´s last blog post ..A Glimpse at Cloquet, Minnesota

  11. Rhiannon says:

    I think you’ll do a wonderful job raising your son! I read your post to my husband, and we agree: mamas are there to teach sons to be kind, loving, passionate gentleman to their wives and children. I think that’s just as important as what daddies are for. 🙂

  12. Lottie says:

    I have a similar worry when/if I have a son because I am rubbish at anything manly but maybe that isn’t my role like you say.

    You will be amazing, I am sure 🙂
    Lottie´s last blog post ..Good bye Ivy i-phone, it was nice knowing you.

  13. Paulette Hawes says:

    Dearest Ashlee –

    I love this post! So sweetly written. I can remember one night as I was rocking you to sleep The thought crept into my mind that your future husband was already born. From that point on I started praying for him. And when I met Mitzie and we both realized you were going to be married some day she told me she when Brett was a baby she, too, was praying for his future wife. You are going to be awesome parents to Baby Boy Gadd.

    Love you, Mom aka Future Baby Gadd Grandma

    P.S. Just wanted to let everyone know that we did camp when Ashlee was little – in a trailer, not a tent. When Ashlee was around twelve years old we started Hilton camping – and never looked back. LOL

  14. becca wikler says:

    Ashlee, this is quite possibly the sweetest thing I have read about your journey so far. You’ve also perfectly and eloquently described why I am so excited (and hopeful) that one day I will have a boy. So I can teach him – like my FMIL taught my fiance, and how my mom taught my brothers, and how my Nanny taught my father – how to be an incredible husband. <3
    becca wikler´s last blog post

  15. I love this post. It’s so sweet and honest, just like you!

  16. Kim says:

    Ashley what an amazing post. I absolutely love this! And will be having the same mindset with my son(s) one day 🙂 I’m bookmarking this so I can re-read it when that day comes!

  17. Laura says:

    I love being a “boy mom.” We were certain the little boy in my belly two-ish years ago was a girl, and were so surprised when we found out, nope, dead wrong. Now, when people ask, “Do you want a girl next?” Well, sure, I’d love to have one of each, at least…but if our next babe is another boy, I’ll be thrilled. Being a boy mom is great. 🙂

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