Gentle. Like holding a newborn baby who is quietly falling asleep in soft, bouncing arms. Gentle. Like two kids kindly sharing crayons to color a picture, carefully staying inside the lines. Gentle. Like tiptoeing into your child’s room in the middle of the night to make sure they are warm and comfortable. Gentle. Like the sounds of crashing waves on a summer’s eve of a secluded beach. Gentle. Gentle? Seriously? I have two sons who I’ve nickname Crash and Bang. There is nothing gentle in this household.
Here. Let me show you how our house does “gentle”.
Yeah. That’s about right. We build towers to knock them down. We jump on beds. We jump down the stairs. We jump off swings. We jump in puddles. We jump on each other. We play kickity kick ball in the house. We soak the ceiling and flood the floor while splashing in the tub. We run and we ricochet off the walls. We spin until we’re so dizzy we fall down. We climb trees. We crash and we bang.
We’ve become numb to it. So long as no one is in real danger of hurting themselves, someone else or breaking the house, it’s tolerated. They can be gentle when they have to be. Babies, pets and stuffies are safe. They get careful hugs and sweet kisses.
The rest of us aren’t so safe. They’re not mean, just rough and tumble and “all boy”. Bang loves to wrestle his big brother. Jumps on him, tackles him, squeezes him, rides him like a horse. Most of the time it’s fun to watch.
They can be gentle. But it’s not in their nature to be.
*When I say “we”, I usually mean Crash and Bang. Not me. Usually.