This is 15.
Holy cats and dogs, friends, I have to tell you early on the thought of parenting a 15-year-old boy was slightly terrifying.
I grew up in a family with all girls and it wasn’t until I was accidentally placed on the boy’s wing in college that I had any kind of idea of what it would be like to have a teenage boy around. And while I loved the boys on my floor and living among them taught me A LOT, it really didn’t help me feel better about parenting a teenager.
And now I have this boy. This almost man. This amazing kid who has taught me more than I ever dreamed.
From the beginning, he was different than my girls. He liked to play with his whole body and his sisters learned to wrestle and pretend to be ninjas and spies.
He was also the sweetest soul in our home ... sensitive and loving and so kind.
Just like I learned girls are not sugar and spice and everything nice (sorry, girls, but I think you’d back me up here), boys are not just snips and snails and puppy dog tails.
All my kids have a little bit of all of it. And getting to know each of them has been an adventure.
And there was just not one reason on earth to be nervous about parenting this kid.
15-year-old boys might not care one bit about what their rooms look like, but they will help you with the dishes whenever you ask.
15-year-old boys might stretch up taller than you seemingly overnight, but they will still hug you before they go to school because they know it makes you happy.
15-year-old boys might love to play Xbox or go fishing or bike all over town all without you, but as much as they are starting to be in this new independent world, they also will sit with you on the couch binge-watching "The Office" for the 1000th time, getting all the jokes and adding immense joy just with their presence.
15-year-old boys might leave their socks and wrappers and cups and cans on every surface everywhere, but they can also fix your ceiling fan and take out the garbage on the regular and will deal with any gross thing you find anywhere without batting an eye (I’m looking at you, mouse our cat caught).
When the doctor announced, “It’s a boy!” I never could have guessed the joy this kid would bring to our house.
This 15-year-old boy is the calm in the storm, the cream in my Oreo and the source of a kind of love I never knew I could feel.
I love him and I like him.
15-year-old boys are amazing humans friends. We are lucky they are in the world.