This weekend I was introduced to a new little boy. His name was Graham Dungan and he was likely the coolest little boy I have ever met. You see, on Friday night Graham had his best friend Bryce spend the night. That worked well for us as Bryce is pretty low maintenance. In fact, he is a downright blast to have around - not only for Graham but for us as well. This weekend was well deserved for Graham and it had been a long time in coming. To enhance the boyness of this overnight event DeeDee even offered to keep the girls overnight. This great sacrifice laid the ground work for the greatest boy night ever.
It wasn't as though they did anything special. There was swimming, flips off of the diving board, super sonic jumps on the trampoline, cap gun wars, pizza for dinner, and even a little Percy Jackson: the Lightening Thief playing on the big screen. But, in the grand scheme of ultra super cool boy nights, there really wasn't anything magical outside of what we saw from the Grahamster.
It was night and day. Graham transformed from the Graham we knew to this confident little boy that was an absolute blast to be around. There was no whining, no tattling, and no complaining. He was a completely different kid and frankly the one we have always known he was. It was incredible to see him unencumbered, free and, well, alive. He is such an awesome kiddo.
Interestingly, this new Graham stayed with us well through the next morning. In fact it was not until about 10 minutes after the girls returned home that his voice began to change. It went from exuding confidence and fun to this whiny, little cry-y voice that just completed his transforming look. His shoulders began to slump, his head began to hang, and the tears began to flow. Apparently, with the arrival of the girls, everything went from perfect balance to completely unfair.
It was quite possibly the most dramatic transition that I have ever seen in a person. You might assume that it was because he was tired after a long night of boydom but I don't really believe that was the case. You see, it wasn't that he got worse. He simply turned back into the Graham that he was whenever the girls were around. It that world, he is discriminated against and holds the lowest rung on the ladder - at least that is how he perceives it.
The question for me is: How do we bring out the other Graham? He is so much happier and balanced. How do we help him with his sisters?
I don't know that I have any answers but this little exercise certainly illustrated the issue. To say the difference was dramatic would be a gross understatement.
It is yet another purpii quandary.