When the girls were small, I took great pains to make certain that I dressed them in clothes suitable for public outings. Everything was clean, color coordinated, and I would say pressed, but we all know that I won’t go within 20 feet of an iron.
I felt like my childrens appearance was a direct reflection on my parenting skills.
Smoke and mirrors.
One fateful day, Fiddledaddy proclaimed to a 4 year old Cailey, “Go ahead and pick out your own clothes today.” I could be heard in the background, “NOOOOOOOO!” And from that day forward, I have tried to steer my daughters in a direction that did not include orange floral capris, with pink striped t-shirts.
And it has mostly been a losing battle.
By the time Jensen came along, I had long since given up the idea that the appearance of a well put together ensemble, meant that I was a stellar mother. Because at that point, with one look at me, and any observant passer-byer could only shake their head in sympathetic shame.
A few days ago, Jensen appeared in the kitchen doorway clad only in his boxer underdrawers stating emphatically, “I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO WEAR.”
And with that, he retreated back into his room. Some time later, from the groans I could hear from the sisters, he had formulated an outfit. He came down the hall wearing black sweat pants, with blue shorts, green t-shirt, black hooded jacket, with his customary red baseball cap on top of the hood of the jacket. Oh yes, and red Crocs. With white socks.
Frankly, I didn’t care, since Fiddledaddy was taking all the children on an outing, while I remained blissfully at home.
No reflection on my parenting prowess, whatsoever.
Imagine Jensen’s delight when he found this item of clothing wrapped under the tree. He had modeled it in Wal Mart, and Fiddledaddy managed to sneak it into the cart and purchase it right under Jensen’s astute nose.
Christmas day was spent with Fiddledaddy’s family. Jensen dressed himself in his Mario bathing trunks, and Mario Brothers t-shirt. At least he matched. No one batted an eye when he breezed through the door.
As I traverse this parenting journey, I am learning to pick my battles. Flip flops when it’s 23 degrees? Not a chance. Short shorts on the 11 year old? Cold day in h***. Pink floral capris with a red striped sweatshirt? A fashion risk, but acceptable.
At what age (theirs, not yours) did you all just give up and let them make their own fashion choices?