My first ex-mother-in-law had six kids: three girls in a row, followed by three boys in a row. "They come as they come," she used to always say, meaning that their inherent personality was fixed and unchangeable from birth.
While I knew that she had concrete experience in child rearing and I did not, I still was quite sure that she was wrong about this. In the Nature Vs. Nurture debate, I came down hard on the side of Nurture.
And then I had kids and learned that she was right. Now, I am not saying that nurture isn't important, but a lot of who kids are is just how they come right out of the package.
I had no idea that two children of the same sex, born of the same parents, sleeping in the same room, possessing the same coloring could be so entirely different.
Even as babies, I was struck more by their differences both in appearance and temperament than by their similarities.
The planets must be in alignment for Big Pants to fall asleep.
Tiny Pants grabs his sleep bunny and is asleep within minutes.
Tiny Pants loves to help cook and pour his own drinks, make his own sandwiches.
Big Pants would rather have me get it for him, even if he has to wait for a half an hour.
Big Pants will not tell a lie.
Tiny Pants doesn't think truth is important as long as it's a good story.
Their brains just work differently; Big Pants digests facts from everything and can spit them back at you on demand. Tiny Pants is overflowing with complex stories.
This morning I was given physical proof of their differences. I offer up Exhibits A and B:
I was awaken by two little boys in soft fleece pajamas with big blue eyes and matching buzz cuts bringing me Art in Bed. Some mothers are brought coffee or toast in bed, but for this holiday my little beastie boys (whom I heard crashing around in their room at 6:00am) brought me art.
Tiny Pants: On the left is a drawing of the bells at school, and these are fire extinguishers, and this at the bottom is my lizard. See?
|Art by Tiny Pants|
Big Pants: Look, Mama! I made you a proper fraction!
|Art by Big Pants|
I love my boys. My very different, interesting little beastie boys who bring their Mama Art in Bed and always keep me entertained.