Be a man.

7 years ago
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Yesterday, I snuggled Sully on the couch as he relaxed and took his bottle before his nap. Yes, he still takes a bottle. I just can't give up the sweet time I get with him. So selfishly, I rocked with him and watched as he fell into a milk coma. When he was ready, I carried him to his room. He nuzzled into my chest with his sweet hands clutching my shirt. He's much bigger than a baby, but sometimes, I still get baby time. He sighed with contentment as I laid him in his crib. A warm, blue bundle of baby sweetness.

I wandered back out into the living room, picked up a few things, dusted, and decided to have some "me time." I crashed on the couched and surfed the channels until I finally settled on Sex in the City. Perfect, mindless trash to indulge in guilt-free during naptime. The women frolicked across the screen in their Manolo Blahniks, enjoyed martinis, and slept around. The men cheated, talked about women, and cheated again. They refused to open doors, said hurtful things to the women they were with, and had no respect for their partners. And I realized, I'm terrified.

I'm terrifed because my son is growing up in a very different world. A world where sex is "safe" if you use protection, chivalry is dead, and cheating is the norm. Teenage moms are on trash magazine covers. Facebook and Twitter are acceptable means of communication with one's peers. Middle schoolers are caught having oral sex in the school bathrooms. Porn is a click away on the home computer. Children aren't always taught to respect their elders. Teachers are assaulted in the classrooms. Everyone has a cell phone by the age of twelve. Women have to watch their backs in parking lots, and parents have to watch their children in their own front yards in fear of someone snatching their precious cargo.

Yes. Life is very, very different.

I want my son to be a real man. A man that opens doors, says "Yes ma'am," a never tries to go too far with a girl. I want my son to be a man that if he has to break a heart, does it cleanly and kindly. A man that doesn't make fun of the easy target on the playground. A man that writes "Thank You" letters and knows how to cook. I want him to be a man that doesn't intentionally hurt feelings, that believes in the power of marriage, and loves God. I hope my son learns to look for morals, integrity, and passion in a wife. I pray that he can enjoy a passionate life with few distractions of rough crowds. A hope he's a man that has a healthy body image and views women for more than just their looks. A man that understands the power of a cruel or kind word. I hope that one day, when he says "I do," he really means it. I hope he's a man that knows that "casual sex" doesn't exist and that women's hearts are easily shattered. I pray that we're able to instill our family values because there is so much in this world today fighting against them.

I hope my son can be a real man, not the kind of man that hurts, abuses, or breaks trust. I dream that Sully will be the kind of man that when faced with an easy or a right decision, he always chooses what's right. I hope he learns to decide for himself where the lines need to be drawn and that he always keeps his senses and roots.

After about an hour, I heard my little man talking over the monitor. His sweet voice was calling out to me as he discussed his nap with his Monkey Man lovey. He brought me back to reality. Though, I will continue to hope and pray that his father and I can teach him what it means to be a good person. Because without morals, boundaries, a relationship with God and family, what is there?

Sally writes about life as a military wife and mom at Exploits of a Military Mama. You can also find her on Twitter.