Hear the thunder - don't lose your head.

There's nothing sacred in teenaged boy culture. Nothing is off limits when it comes to fun poking. Southern gospel legends, literary classics featuring Quakers or depicting civil wars, family traditions, lessons in logic and even reverent moments in Star Wars. Their irreverence is limitless and cynicism boundless. Everything seems to amuse. Aren't I proud?

Actually... They question absurdities and half truths. They recognize a lack of integrity when they come upon it. I'm grateful to see when the hormonal imbalance they experience over several years does not completely destroy their frontal lobes, as once feared. And I find that once I recovered from the shocking discovery that each has their own thoughts, often in direct conflict with mine, I could be secretly proud of the independence they assert, the only Cute and Little that remains in big boys.

This is the goal of parenting after all. Roots followed by wings. Admittedly, the wings they are developing are not as I imagined when I nursed baby boy after boy, but they are their own nevertheless.

In church, they clap on the off beat and I furrow my brows at them disapprovingly, understanding full well we have the makings of spirits ready to soar freely. When the time is come, my instinct is not to hinder but gently persuade and guide. When the time is come, there will be plenty of hindrances to overcome and only then will they be finely chiseled down to their essence.

But I'm Roots and Wings.

These are Rarities, I like to think. These boys own their thoughts with little consideration of peers. Their operating mode functions just outside the parameters of This culture or That so as to form a subculture. But, in my heart of hearts, I know subcultures only matter in youth as, eventually, parameters will be set for them by such things as economics and future mothers to my future grandchildren.

Meanwhile, the unappealing state of their boy bathroom will surely be the first hindrance they face. Let the chiseling begin.

I'm Roots, Wings and a bit of Chisel.