Football, Cuddling and Eye Contact

I’m the only bit of estrogen in a testosterone filled home… well, unless you count our one year-old Brittany Spaniel, Millie. But let’s be honest, Millie chews on socks so I’m not sure she counts. Because of my sole-femaleness (is that a word?) my awareness of my role in helping shape my boys’ future is huge. I realize their interaction with me will help shape the type of woman they marry, how they communicate with their wife as well as what they’ll expect from the gal who steals their heart. Talk about pressure!

As a side note, when they were infants and not able to comprehend me fully I’d often whisper to them, “Never love another woman as much as you love your momma.” I know it was horrible, but they were wee little bundles and so cushiony and sweet that I wanted to imagine they’d be mine forever. Now that they’re bigger and getting closer to puberty every day I have no intention of creating co-dependent momma’s boys! In fact, we have regular conversations about what kind of girl they’d like to marry.

Personally, I’ve never been a great communicator, now don’t get me wrong… I can talk. But sometimes I don’t communicate as clearly as I’d like. It’s probably the biggest issue in my marriage. In fact, my husband recently said to me, “If you asked me what I was thinking instead of assuming you know based on my facial expressions you’d probably be surprised with my answer.” And to think I often pride myself on my mind-reading abilities!

Because I know communication can be a personal weakness I work hard to be intentional on my communication with each of our boys… what’s fascinating is how they all need to be communicated to in such different ways.

Take my oldest, Jett, for example. He loves being active. I get the most out of him when we’re throwing a football in the backyard, on a hike in the park or playing 9 holes of golf at a par 3 (unless I’m beating him then he seems to shut down 😉 ). The point being, I’m gonna get more out of Jett when we’re “doing” rather than sitting down and chatting on the couch.

Gage, on the other hand, was created for cuddling. If I sit down in the same room with him he’s immediately beside me, bodies pressed together. He’s most chatty about life during down time… when he sneaks into our bed in the morning, when I’m laying down with him at bedtime or when we’re just hanging on the couch looking at a book.

And Brewer, who will eternally be referred to as the “baby,” communicates best when I am focused solely on him. He likes eye-contact and affirmation he’s been heard. Frustration creeps in when he hears me answering him but sees I’m not looking at him. If he doesn’t get the affirmation he needs he’s like a broken record trying to make sure he’s been heard correctly… and if he doesn’t receive reciprocation he’ll shut down and head to his room to be alone.

The difference in their communication styles can keep a momma busy. But let’s be honest, there’s no one else I’d rather be figuring out!

Your turn… I’d love to hear what you’ve found to be the best form of communication to reach each of your children.

Brandi is a wife to Pete and mom to Jett, Gage, and Brewer. Her life is truly “Brandi & Boys.” She is not trying for a 4th baby to “get a girl” as that is the question most asked of her. God has placed some amazing girls in her life she gets to love and influence. Brandi has been a pastor’s wife for almost 15 years. She and her husband planted Cross Point Church in Nashville, Tennessee in 2002. Brandi has a heart for women in ministry and co-leads a ministry for pastors’ wives called “Leading and Loving It.” Brandi loves to be organized, but hates to clean. She is always up for trying a new recipe, especially if it’s a dessert. Reading is a favorite past time and she almost reads fiction. She adores the beach, Diet Dr. Pepper and ice cream is her favorite food.