I have no one to blame but myself.
I mean, raising mama’s boys was almost a goal. I loved how much they needed me. I loved doing things for them. It was my twisted pleasure to find myself at 2 am sleepwalking between nursing a baby to comforting a boy who woke with a nightmare to helping another boy to the bathroom. I took pride in refusing help; taking all my boys with me to doctor appointments or errands, snubbing carpools to drive myself crazy instead. I catered three different meals at night, picked up their toys because it was easier, zipped my son’s jacket at five years-old and tied shoes at 10.
They asked and I answered. “Can you pack my back pack? Can you get me a snack? Can you can you can you…?”
‘Yes! Mommy can!’ was my war cry.
And mommy did. Again and Again.
See honey, no one else will cut off those crusts, make you a perfect scrambled egg or wash your Spiderman shirt so you could wear it every day like I can.
Was it dysfunctional and co-dependent? Yup. Would I do it again? Probably.
Because back then, we were all one happy needy bunch of love and it was good.
But now that my boys are 6, 9 and 12, I see things a little differently.
In fact, I see them at 30…
They would of course still be living at home because why would they leave free room, board, a stocked fridge and complimentary housekeeping?
There would be hair scruff in all my bathroom sinks, dirty underwear and socks on the floor and loud snoring from every bedroom.
I probably would suffocate from all the gas inhalation.
Or die from embarrassment when they run in on me in the bathroom to demand justice when one of them uses the others deodorant or finishes the last bag of chips.
I may as well just put a cot by the washing machine and sleep there.
And I could never just sit and enjoy a cup of wonderful, steaming coffee in the morning since I’d be dragging their asses out of bed for work – if they had jobs – and making them eggs, three different ways.
All of a sudden, raising mama boys didn’t look as appealing.
So lately I’ve been loosening those ties, and giving my boys more independence and responsibility. They now get themselves dressed in the morning, wash up and tie their own shoes. They do the recyclables and empty the dish washer. They put their clothes away and make their own snacks. They know what they have to do and do it.
It’s a process.
But we’ll get there. Because now I see that you don’t mess with the natural order of things. Children grow, you lovingly guide them on the road to being responsible and then you gently shove them out to greener pastures.
Of course they must still call daily, visit at least once a week and marry girls you deem appropriate.
I may no longer want mama’s boys, but mama’s men just might work.