"Manboys" The boys I love and the men they are becoming.

Sometimes remembering is just the piece of heaven you need.
In a world far, far away I live in a castle in the sky, the birds sing and sunlight streams through perfectly clean windows.  It is bliss, this "home" where I am seated in heavenly places. 

In the meantime, I am here in a dirty kitchen.  The sound of zombies and soldiers drowning out my thoughts.  These boys that have taught me so much, they are the "manboys" in my life.  They look like young men but they are still boys.  They still chase each other around, laugh at silly jokes, they will still on occasion hug their mother.  They play hard and when they are done they still smell like stinky wet dogs(no one tells you that in parenting classes).  These boys have been my life for over half of my existence, apart from them I am not sure who I would be.  I have had to die to self in order for them to live; meaning there have been times I wanted to kill them.  When they were young they would tell me they wanted to marry me.  Now most of the time I am their annoying, embarrassing mother.  They no longer think I am beautiful.  They don't put their little hands on either side of my face and turn me to look into their eyes so they can ask me a question.  Questions now are asked in text and to get any human contact usually involves some form of bribery.

                               Yes, you can have gas money but you will have to give me a hug. 

These are the boys of my life, each very different yet each carrying a piece of my heart.   They have shown me love and I have loved them with a love that defies all reason.  An unconditional love.  In the midst of bad behavior, bad attitudes and all sorts of other unpleasant stuff my love has not run dry.  I have battled for these boys so much that even in my dreams I would be contending for them.  Fighting off the enemy and praying protection over them.  They have taught me to love their friends and some I even would call spiritual sons because I love them so deeply.  Over and over again they have taught me.  Taught me how much flesh I still have left, taught me how little I can do in my own strength, taught me what a generous childlike heart looks like, taught me how to laugh at myself, taught me what was really important (and it wasn't cleanliness, surprise... it was time), taught me what it was to care more about someone other than yourself and mostly they taught me that love isn't easy. 

Overcoming sharpie on walls, stealing the car, destroying property, getting through school, chasing dogs down hills, motorcycle spills, seriously close calls, broken hearts, stitches, one lost boy, running from police, one who hated potty training, one who broke my heart, anger that mirrored my own, fights over toys, forts for days, messy rooms, dirty toilets, chicken nuggets, growing pains in legs at two in the morning, three night a week practices, Saturdays given over to sports, biting babies on their backs, back talk and straight talk, sleepless nights waiting up and being battle weary, all these things made me better, stronger and more thankful for a heavenly Father who still loves me in the messiness of my own life.  I feel sure there is a parallel here. 

I love these boys with the battle scars, the facial hair where it used to be smooth baby skin, the blue eyes, kind hearts, hard workers, deep thinkers and sometimes heartbreakers.  They are masters of the Zombie land and they are masters of my heart.  I look at them and see that it was all worth it, they have made me a better person with all their dirt, dogs, sports, stench, trials, smiles, baby boy giggles and "manboy" roaring laughter.  They are strong and kind, God lovers and hard workers, smart and loyal, brave and funny.   They are my boys and I think some day they shall be my best friends.

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