This room.

We knew nothing about the child that would occupy this room. Only that there would be a baby. Boy or girl, this would be our baby’s room.

The pink carpeting was already there; I thought to myself, “paint the ceiling blue, that will balance the pink a bit.” We’d be covered either way, gender-wise. “Put something interesting on the ceiling for the baby to look at while lying in the crib that Daddy built.” So, five months along and probably not in the most sound mindset, I persuaded my husband to haul scaffolding up into the room so I could freehand those clouds with greater ease.

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“Keep the walls a calm, creamy color,” I thought. “Sew curtains from a toile-patterned fabric in a grassy green color.” No matter the baby, we had a furnished space for that little bundle to grow and thrive.

It’s not the same room today.

The crib moved out two years ago, replaced by a big boy bed we acquired on Craigslist. Those toile curtains are folded and put away, replaced with something quick and a bit more masculine from a local retailer.

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The changing table is stowed away, and now a washstand that holds toys, games and still a few security blankies is tucked into that corner. A growth chart measures that baby’s bursts of height over the past four years.

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A dresser holds the clothes that he can remove from the drawers by himself and (mostly) dress himself in the mornings. The desk we repainted is where he draws and writes and recreates scenes from his favorite movies.

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Our baby is a baby no more. He is well on his way to big boyhood.

We could only guess at what our child may like or dislike while choosing paint colors and fabrics before. Now our child shows us every day what interests him. Some have endured from the moment we stepped outdoors with a newborn and he fixed his eyes on the treetops, never wavering. Others have only recently emerged, like a love of the color purple.

So, we had as rational a conversation as one can have with a four-year-old about room designs, and arrived at a decision: it’s to make a big boy room for him.

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