Tuesday, September 13, 2005

I'm one of....THEM

Earlier today, I called my best friend, Jenny. 

My friend, who just ran some crazy, altitude-challenged race in Colorado.  She just completed the Imogene Pass Run, a fun-filled, 17.1 miles from Ouray to Telluride, with the altitude starting at 7810 ft, peaking out at 13,120 ft and ending at 8820 ft. on a charming 4x4 type trail. 


I told her I'd take up smoking if I wanted to challenge my breathing capacity that way.

I'm proud of her (really), though, considering that when we were kids, this is the girl who couldn't dribble a ball and run at the same time without causing one of us bodily harm.  And considering that she's in better shape than all of the people who ever teased her about that, she is certainly capable of having the last laugh--well, after that race, I think it was probably a gasp.  It doesn't matter, her fitness voodoo is better than my fitness voodoo at any rate. 

But I could always pull that childbirth-is-hell card, if need be. 

And she could remind me that she biked across Iowa in July.

Somehow, I don't think pregnancy-is-hell can top that.

I digress.

I called her, and I said:  "Remember, when we used to work in urgent care, and we'd look down our noses at the Moms going into Peds with the little kids dressed in whatever hodgepodge of a costume they could piece together?  That "who's the parent" snootiness as we'd chuckle at them?"


"Well, start laughing now."

"What is she wearing?"

"I am going to  PetsMart..........with Snow White."

Oh, she got a good hearty one out of that.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I let the girl out of the house in full-on Snow White regalia.  (I've reflected on this, and have come to peace with it, afterall, Snow White is a nice change from Power Rangers and Batman.)

Yesterday, my Dad bought her a set at Costco, that had shoes, a tiara, a little purse, and a scepter, all adorned with pictures of Snow White, in SW's colors, of course. 

We already possessed a Snow White top and skirt that her cousin had bequeathed her in a bag of costume/dress-up play outfits.  She put on the outfit, and accessorized.  It should be a proud moment for me.

It is, but it just makes me cringe inwardly at my former narrow mindset.  I mean, once they reach a certain age, and sometimes before that, when they are willful toddlers, kids wear what they want.  They don't care if it's screaming-mimi orange and pink striped top with a chartreuse bottom.  They don't care what you may have pulled out for them a cute, clean outfit, if their favorite shirt is only a little wrinkled and their pants fit.  There I was, pre-kid, blaming the Mom for not putting her foot down, and not appreciating that she really didn't have a choice.  Get Jr to his appt on time, or fight about his choice of footwear, hmmm?  The joke's on me.

I have found that somewhere in between giggling at other parents and picking my battles, I've gone over to the other side...I'm one of them.  <gasp, shriek>  The people who let their kids out in mismatched shoes, or clothes, with "oh, that'll do" hair and a few stains on their shirt.  I even will admit (and this one is so, so painful) that I will, I have, cleaned the mark off their face in the time-honored Mom fashion--lick the thumb, wipe off the face.

I swore I'd never do that.  The first time I did it, I recoiled in horror...and stocked my car, my purse, my pockets with wipes, vowing to never,ever, do it again.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't do it just this afternoon and two or three times this past weekend. 

Why, do you ask?  Because even if the outfit is horrid, if their face is clean, I can deal with it.

Usually, the kids are totally presentable.  It's those times when one sneaks by me, that we're all in the van, ready to go, now, and out trots one of the boys in a testament to kid-dom. 

Red on mismatched red.  Torn butt.  Torn knee, almost all the way around the leg.  A white shirt so worn it is now...gray.  (Ben once wore a pair of shoes, that I hated, that were so sketchy you could've punched out the sides and made sandals out of them.)  I always notice when it's too late.  You know, like when we are already at our destination, miles away from "go inside and change."

Yup, those times, when I just have to shake my head and soldier on, and hope people notice their manners and not the fact that Ryan is accidentally wearing Ben's shirt (hanging off his shoulder); Ben has on Nolan's shorts (um, did the fact that two of you could fit in there not clue you in, bud?); that Nolan has on something he should have handed down months ago, but refuses to give up; that my sweet little miss was not aiming for "tart" when she dressed herself that morning.

The reminders to me that I need to go through their drawers, and reassign things.

Snow White and I made it to the school after PetsMart, where she was a hit with all the people who saw her.  She was awfully cute, and I figure, if you can't get away with something like that when you are three, then when can you?

I'm just glad she didn't ask me to match.

Although, I'm kinda looking twice at that tiara....


yaya1 said...


tdgulledge said...

Such a cute story!  I long for the days for my little "batman" running down the hallways at my job.  Its seems like yesterday, (not 6 years ago!)   It used to be that I thought my worst nightmare was to become my mother, now I wish that I had inherited more of her many talents and was a bit more like her... (how  scary is that! YIKES!)

ksquester said...

BEHOLD the power of "Mothers spit"   too funny!  Anne

astaryth said...

Awww... It was so easy in those pre-children times to say "No child of mine will ever (fill in the blank). <LOL>

pixiedustnme said...

yup, at some point you just learn it's easier not to argue - hmmm, you'll go and not complain about anything if you can wear that?  OK - let's go!

tdain2003 said...

I think you certainly need your own tiara to match hers on your outings!  I cringe at how I judged others and how I said I'd be a better mommy.... this from the mom who's kids are just like Pig Pen from Peanuts... with their own dust cloud swirling around them.