Third children are rare these days, but back when most families had a third child it was an interesting role to play. I rarely got to make decisions about what we watched on TV or what activities we did as a family. But that was OK. I was usually left to my own devices, and I was able to create a fairly wonderful play-world for my self. There is a lot to be said for a childhood where you are not the focus of everyone's attention. I was able to be myself, whatever that was. My younger brother did not come around until I was four, and I am sorry to say I really was not all that interested in him. For one thing he was a baby, and then he quickly turned into a boy.
Back then I not only thought boys were boring, but I thought they were weird, too. They played with cars and trucks, for crying out loud. What the hell kind of fun are you going to have involving a truck? At least that was my perspective. I was not a "tomboy", nor do I wish I had been one. Good for you if boy stuff is what floated your boat as a child, but it was absolutely not my cup of tea. That is not a judgment on what is better or what is worse. I am a third child and I do not feel strongly about having my way be the right way. That is not the way the world works when you are a third child. I am just stating for the record that I was a girly girl and I loved it. If I could go back and change anything it would to wear more pink. In fact, I may start wearing pink now! What a great color.
I have a grandson and I play with him a lot. I adore him. I would do anything for him. But when he starts in with the cars and trucks my eyes glaze over with supreme boredom. I play with cars and trucks on autopilot, just going through the motions. I am not having fun. Eventually I re-emerge, energized and fully present for tag, hide-and-go seek, drawing, games, and acting like a monster. I love playing with tinker toys and building blocks. I love rolling all over the floor and chasing him in the pool. I fully appreciate the energy that goes into play, and I no longer think boys have cooties. I can see that he is truly creative about car and truck play and it makes him happy. Cars and trucks seems like good play things to me. I simply do not "get" the attraction of things with wheels. However, if that is what he likes, then I am all for it. I love him. That's what you do when you love someone, you accept them even when they are different than you are.
I am thankful for boys! But you know what? I am thankful for girls, too. I am tired of people putting down those sweet little girls who want to wear pink and be ballerinas when they grow up. While we're at it, I like little boys who wear pink and want to be ballerinas, too. And I am very thankful for little girls who like trucks or want to be superheros. I am so happy that everyone is not like me. Most of all, I am thankful for the innocence of children who play with what they like, or wear what they truly love, regardless of whether it is gender appropriate or not. The world is so damn interesting.