The first time someone questioned me about Nasir playing with dolls, I responded so well I shocked myself; I thank the Holy Spirit for His wisdom, because I don’t think well on my feet when I’m emotionally charged.
Yes, he has sisters who have dolls, and I’m not about to ban certain toys from him, and vice versa. Not only that, his dad cares for him and shows him affection.
That’s what men do. That’s what fathers do. So naturally, I love witnessing him play in a nurturing way as much as I love his passion for basketball, and when he roars like a dinosaur.
Some of my best memories of childhood are of playing “family” and “cooking show” with my nephew.
Those were the days. He’s now grown and a married family man with a son [and a daughter] himself.
So many of us grew up with false, fear-based, at times unspoken messages that have stunted us emotionally. We end up hurting, and hurting others if we don’t do the work to grow our thinking and our capacity to love. I had to do some work to arrive here myself.
Don’t get me wrong—I believe children need guidance; we are commanded to train them up.
I believe children need limits to thrive.
I also believe we want boys to grow into men who love us and lead us well, so we need to create space for them to be soft and strong from the beginning.
And what better symbol of strong and tender than a butterfly.
This boy has expanded the love in my heart times infinity.
Shush Your Shame
Jennifer J. Jones