Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Guaranteed Future Therapy- The Fine Print of the Parenting Handbook

Pants are made today with an elastic band on the inside. This band has button holes, and the whole concept is that you can tighten or loosen pants as needed for your specific child. This past weekend when we went jeans shopping for Smooch, we bought 4 such pairs of pants from Old Navy at 7$ each. Three were his current size, one the next size up. I figured I could just tighten them for the brief period of time before his next growth spurt.

This morning, before Smoochie got dressed and ready for school, he brought a nicely washed and folded pair of pants to me. “Mom are these the ones that need to be tightened?”

At that particular moment in my morning, I was bleary eyed, jonesing for caffeine, listening to Critter scream, and trying to make a nutritious Pb&j lunch for Smoochie. To be quite honest, at that particular ebb of my little stay at home universe, which pair of jeans needed tightening was massively eluding me. So I gave him the best answer I possibly could considering the frazzled circumstances. “I have absolutely no clue whatsoever honey, put them on and we’ll find out.”

And that was the last word from him regarding the jeans.

We went about our hectic morning, got everyone ready (I was leaving immediately after Smooch was bus bound for an early morning walk with Critter), went to the van for the stroller and told Smooch he could push his brother. He takes great 6 year old joy in that little act. Most times, he pushes like he’s been tipping the bourbon, but Critter doesn’t seem to mind, and as long as he stays mostly sidewalk bound and completely away from the road, I don’t mind either.

Now that Critter can mostly sit up by himself we finally broke out the jogging stroller, and this was Smoochie’s first test drive. He took off jogging (because it IS a jogging stroller after all) and I immediately noticed what I should have noticed at home. He was wearing the big pants. He had to hit the breaks to hike up his britches at least twice on the three house walk to the bus stop. Let’s just say I felt like a total bump for not noticing earlier, and I was faced with perhaps my greatest mothering dilemma to date.

There was no time to go back to the house and correct the situation. Do I embarrass him in front of his friends waiting at the bus stop by adjusting the band on the inside of his jeans, or do I let it slide (pun may have been intended) and close my eyes and hope beyond hope his pants don’t fall prey to gravity and expose his little Mach 5 Fruit of the Looms at school in front of 24 or so other classmates? On one hand, I’m looking at a guaranteed future therapy session full of ‘my mom is the most vile, embarrassing, evil person on the planet musings’, and on the other I was looking at probable (but not guaranteed) lifetime scarring (aka personality shaping- the stuff tough guys are made of). I decided to play the odds. I watched him hitch his boot cut denim up again twice more in line, once more before he stepped onto the first bus step, and then pulled out an eyelash and wished for the best possible outcome.

Did I do the right thing? What would you have done?


for a different kind of girl said...

First, I would have commended you for having jeans at the ready for him! Even after plenty of years at this, I am never ready for the return of jeans on school days. I am either digging through crates to see if there are any hand-me-downs that fit, then I'm running to Target in hopes they have the boys' size in, and for cheap!

So, truly, kudos to you!

I may have asked if he wanted the jeans adjusted, and if it would be ok to do it there. My oldest would no doubt say nope, but my youngest might still let me. Barring that, I would have looked forward to the end of their day to see how it went (and I wish I knew now, because tomorrow, my oldest is planning to wear a new pair of shorts that are just a wee bit too big for his boney, lanky frame, and, just like the jeans issue, we weren't able to find his belt!

Anonymous said...

oh chas I hope everything goes well for him, but the rare chance that he gets an ouchy trying to play, run or walk do take a picture and blog it for us you know the humor I see in other peoples grief. I do believe the little guy would have let you fix his pants without any say in the matter----but 6 years from now the other little guy will scream at you before you even leave the house to FIX THESE PANTS MOM followed by the wonderful look of ATTITUDE!!!!!!!!!

love ya aunt cindy

Mom said...