Isaac had his "real" birthday party yesterday...a Pokemon theme with balloon animals, a magic show, piñata, and Hawaiian food. He and his friends really enjoyed the planned parts, but mostly they hurled and kicked 30" exercise balls at each other, pruning our trees in the process. Sometimes things got so crazy, you just had to look away and hope if anything really was wrong, someone would scream to let you know.
That's not a bad thing, though. I love watching boys horsing around, especially at this age, when they are strong enough to really do damage to each other, but you can tell they are trying to hold back a little, even as they dare each other to throw harder, climb higher, run faster. It is just like watching big dogs play-fighting at the dog park. The threat of harm makes the hair on everyone's neck stand up, but at the same time they are teaching each other what are the appropriate levels of rambunctiousness.
But all crazy-fun things must come to an end, and when the last of our guests left, we all collapsed together on the couch, relishing the silence. I asked Isaac if he had a good time, and he said, "Oh yeah, whew! My friends are really wild!"
"Well, all boys are wild at this age, I suppose," I replied.
"No, actually some boys like princesses."
"Wow, yes they do. Which kind are you?"
"Well, I'm kinda in the middle. I like to get wild sometimes, and I like princesses too."
Our jaws dropped. Did my son just give me a gender identity lesson? Did we really just see him refuse to define himself by simplistic labels?
I think I'm going to like seven.