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9to5to9: Wearing me out over what to wear

Submitted by on Sunday, 12 October 2008 No Comment


The unusual nip in the air here the past couple days meant I had to hit head-on this morning an issue I usually can delay for at least three more weeks: Big Guy’s resistance to changing his clothes.

I don’t mean on a day-in, day-out basis. He’s usually OK with that, though he’s been known to cling to his favorite Batman pajamas until they can stand up by themselves.

I mean the type of change that comes after you box up the shorts and haul out the sweaters.

The second I stuck my head out the door this morning, I knew that day had arrived.

“It’s cold outside. Let’s find a T-shirt to go under your soccer uniform,” I said casually, but not casually enough. The anti-change missile defense system activated anyway.

Noooooooo!” Big Guy moaned. None of my friends will be wearing one.”

I handed him the shirt and went into my room. Minutes later, he followed.

“Look, I put my arm out the door and it’s not that cold. So I don’t need the shirt.”

“Yes, you need the shirt. Your friends have been wearing them for weeks. It’s too cold to play without it. If you get sweaty and then cold you’ll get sick, and you don’t want that,” I said, picking up speed as I preached but skidding to a halt just shy of my mom’s classic closer, “and you’ll get sick and die of pneumonia.”

Every transition is this way with Big Guy. I think he has fashion seasonal affective disorder.

Two autumns ago, he protested “sleeves that go down.” The following summer, he wanted to know who took the bottom of his pants. Last fall, he wore sandals with his Halloween costume. He gave those up early this year only because the soles separated and were slowing him down.

And aside from his uniform he consented to wear shorts only four times this summer – three of them when temperatures hit the 100s on soccer practice day. Yes, I had to insist.

Clothes shopping recently for “sleeves that go down” was a major adventure. He eventually consented, but only if the shirts had a baseball, soccer ball or the color green. Two out of the three was bonus points. We’ll see how long it takes for him to agree to wear them.

Ordinarily, I don’t care what he wears. He walked around this spring wearing one soccer shoe, one SpiderMan lace-up, purple soccer socks and camouflage sweat pants. He clings to his Christmas pajamas every year until he gets tired of waking up sweaty.

I’m fine with that. But there reaches a point — such as when it’s 50 degrees and the only thing separating him from a bitter wind is one thin yellow jersey — where I have to step in.

Had it not been game day today, Big Guy would have squawked until one of us — probably me — was in tears. But because soccer was involved and he’d chew off one of his arms to play he relented. Quickly agreed to a jacket, too.

Even conceded my point as we got in the car.

“This feels weird,” he grinned as he fiddled with his seat belt. “But I’m warm!”

Next stop: Sleeves that go down.

Copyright 2008 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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