He bursts into the house after school and I only know this because of the door slamming and the whistling.  The back pack is carelessly tossed on the floor as he yells for me.

“Mooommmm.”  Then soon becomes “Mom? Mom?”

It’s not that he wants to say anything.  He just wants to know I’m there.  He might even be wondering if he can skip chores or take an extra cookie if I’m not there.  But today he is reassured I’m home and he opens the fridge to eat.  His chatter is excited as he tells me about the school concert his class is doing.

I thought they were’nt having a Christmas Concert this year?  The teachers are on strike or something?

But he then proceeds to explain the dance they did and he says watch.  He puts on youtube and shows me, looking a little self-concious but pleased none the less.

He’s 12.  He still needs a hug at least twice a day.

Growing up without brothers, boys scared me.  They were loud and active and different.   I didn’t trust them.  Now, as a mother I wonder when the shift came from fear to love.  I love my boys and wonder what I ever did without them?  I have learned so much about them and they really aren’t so strange. {hah} Now when I see 16 year olds standing in a group at the door of the store.  I know.

Oh yes, I know.

They might look cool, dressed in baggy pants and hoodies with hair swept just over their eyes.  Those Justin Bieber look a-likes.  But I know.

They will go home and want their mom to watch them dance.

They are becoming men, learning, trying to be all who they think they are supposed to be.  Strong, weak, Tough, merciful.  Becoming both is challenging.

So he grabs a cookie and some milk after showing me his dance and heads to the garage band music he’s working on and I’m left feeling the breeze he brought in the room.

My boy.

Joining Emily here.