Congratulations, Dylan, you’re a two-boy mom!
Welcome to the club. This is going to be one of the most wonderful chapters….
Lost my train of thought.
OK back, sorry. Nerf dart in the eye. So, yes! I wrote this with the help of TODAY Parents editor Rebecca Dube, who also has two boys, because, as you’re about to find out, it’s hard to complete a thought when foam pellets are being launched at your face. When you’re a two-boy mom, it takes a village of other boy moms to assemble one fully functioning brain.
But it’s the freaking best. Here’s what we wish we knew before these two delightful scamps ran tear-assing into our lives.
What was I about to say again?
When you had one boy, you had this wonderful gift: An attention span. Cherish it now because soon, hoo boy, you’ll be kissing it goodbye. Once your second boy is upright, you will never again be able to focus your attention on any one thing because the minute you turn your back to fill the taco shells… oh my god. Is that Sharpie? On my curtains? Why would you do this to me while I’m making you dinner?
Was it kid? Husband? Dog? Line ‘em all up, “Usual Suspects”-style. Except in this case, you’ll get no mug-smashing moment of clarity like in the movie when they figured out who Keyser Soze was. Keyser Soze is all of them. IT’S ALL OF THEM.
The boy-mom nod
Do you have a daughter? Yes? Well it was nice knowing you! You see, I’ve joined this exclusive, exhausting, terrifying all-male club, and girl moms simply can’t relate to my pain. Very quickly, two-boy moms learn about the boy-mom nod. It’s when you meet another mom and find out she, too, has two boys, and you both make a face that looks like a smile but is actually a silent scream. You’ll exchange no words, but understand each other completely. It would be beautiful if it weren’t so… oh my god. No, no, no, never ever ever are you to ride the dog like that! We just talked about this five minutes ago!
Comparison is the thief of joy
This is true all the time, but especially for parents, and especially parents of boys. Don't compare yourself to that Instagram mommy whose seven children are wearing matching white linen overalls, lined up smiling in front of a colorful organic dairy barn — I promise you, just out of the frame her nanny is holding a hammer over their iPads to threaten them into cooperation. When my boys were toddlers, some of my mom friends with girls would do things like spend an afternoon shopping for clothes and having tea with their children, and I was so jealous. That sounds so nice! Tea parties! Spa days! Sitting quietly for more than five minutes! These are things I hear other parents enjoy, and maybe I will experience them one day, but not now. Not with my boys. And that's OK.
Hold on. It’s too quiet
I just need to go check to make sure the kids haven’t left the apartment or lit anything on fire BRB.
The days are long, but the years are also long too actually
This time goes fast? Like how fast? Can you be more specific, and maybe build a countdown clock for me that I can keep in my kitchen?
When you hear parents of older kids talk about how the years fly by, know that all the other two-boy moms are also cursing those people and their ridiculous BS, because the days are CRAWLING by and you have a black eye from an accidental sippy-cup injury. You know you’ll probably cry on the day you drop the first, and then the last one off at college, but will you, actually? Will you? (Spoiler alert: You totally will.)
Where do you keep the plastic surgeon’s number?
I’m not kidding. Mine is taped to the inside of a kitchen cabinet door. You will have to call this doctor one day. You’ll probably help put her kid through college.
Wouldn't hurt to have poison-control on speed dial, too. And maybe just memorize the signs of a concussion or bookmark it on your phone, to save time.
Get ready to rumble
We don't know you that well, but we're willing to wager your life up until now has been pretty peaceful. How many fist fights have you broken up? How many of them involved biting and/or the use of chicken nuggets as a deadly weapon? Welcome to your new life as an Ultimate Fighting referee. The amount of violence you will tolerate slowly increases until you find yourself saying things like, "Is there blood? Any broken bones? OK then, play nice and don't bother Mommy."
Aren't these just gender stereotypes?
A lot of this is true about any siblings, of course, regardless of gender. Sisters have epic battles, too. And we all learned in college that gender is a social construct, which we still believe. Yet, some things are just different about raising boys.
And every child is a unique individual, special as a snowflake. Rebecca's boys are now 6 and 9 and they are totally different people — one boy is sweet and sensitive, the other is more rough and tumble. They share a deep love for each other, and also a deep commitment to trying to murder each other. They're special little murder snowflakes.
Stinky Snuggle Town, population: You
You know how awesome the snuggles are now? They’re about to get 1,000 times as good, because when you add another boy into the snuggle mix, the joy in your heart grows exponentially. Real talk here: The hugs and kisses you will get from these two sweaty, stinky little gremlins are the finest in all the land. Even though just a minute ago you were considering sending them off to boarding school like the Baroness in “The Sound of Music,” now that you’re at the bottom of a pile of butts and limbs and hair that smells like — is that hummus? mulch? — your heart will feel so full it might burst.