Gender Bender

This weekend I had the glorious opportunity to sit my bum in a salon chair and read to my heart’s content.  And when I got home, Sprout ooo-ed and aaahh-ed over my pink sparkly toes.   Princess toes, he said.

Naturally, being 4 years old and only at the initial cusp of understanding the enormous burdens our society places on the genders, he asked if he could have painted toes too.  I said yes and let him select his colors.  He now has sandal-ready green and blue toesies.  Proud as punch and showing them off to everyone he encounters – he’s grown up.  pretty much 5.  with painted toes, just like mommy.

Two (bratty) 10-year-old girls at the playground didn’t think it was quite as cool as he did. 

“Why are your toes painted? Are you trying to be a girl? Ewww!”

[thank goodness I was trailing a wild toddler or my inner mama bear would have jumped the railing and clawed her face.  okay, not really. but almost.]

“I’m a boy but my mommy said I could still have pretty toes.”

“That’s weird.”

“That’s your opinion.”

And just like that he turned those painted toes in the opposite direction and marched away, head held high, and found himself a new playmate.

Tears of pride and sadness came to eyes.  When did he get so big? And brave? And confident?  My goodness, I’m such a fan of that kid.

You take my breath away Sprout.  I just couldn’t love you any more.

14 Responses to “Gender Bender”

  1. That’s your opinion. LOL. I love it. I need him to live closer to be a positive influence on my kids! 🙂

  2. Awesome. What a great kid (with great parents!)

  3. I read your blog often but have never commented. This post is bringing me out of lurkerdome!

    I’m so proud of your little man. This story just brought such a big smile to my face. He’s doing ok, better than ok really :). He’s got you and A to thank for that!

  4. Good for him!!! That kid is awesome 🙂

  5. Amazing (especially in light of my post today)!!!! Wahhoooo!!!! Sprout!!!! What a big guy!

    And Wahoooo!!!! to you Mama! You’re doing good 🙂

  6. That post did my heart good!

  7. Sprout – You rocked it! Way to go!
    Parents – You have so much to be proud of in that little guy 🙂

  8. Love it, love it, love it! You go Sprout! And good job mamas, what an awesome little man to be proud of!

  9. I love that your four year old said, “That’s your opinion.” I wish most adults could say that calmly, clearly, and walk away.
    As Mama Monica would say, “That’s a MAN-not a boy.” (told you I loved your line & was stealing it. )

  10. THAT is amazing! LOVE!

  11. Just another testament to your great parenting. Bravo Sprout! He sounds like such an incredible little man.

  12. YES! I so hope that I can raise Gwen to be so brave, sure, confident, and accepting! Good job Mama!

  13. I love it!! What an awesome little boy! And what awesome parents.

    Heartwarming story. 🙂


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