I always laugh at my friend Anna, when she tells me her antics surrounding raising girls and their opinions about their attire-- she is always keeping track of bows, making sure they're in the hair, disputing about what matches and what shoes will be worn, and well, I'm just raising boys who love a nice puppy/ sport/ or Disney character on their clothes and that is that.
Or so I thought!
Uncle Eli may be gone, but his influence is NOT...... you see Uncle Eli is SUPER stylish-- I mean that, no pun or joke included. He has more clothes right this second than most people will have their entire lives, all added together. One of the things that Max clued in on was his sock/ shoe choices-- Max knew that with certain tennis shoes for certain events, Eli would wear tall socks. And usually they were blue and usually they matched his shoe strings. Max would notice EVERY time Eli wore them. And eventually, when we were at the store, Max needed "big tall socks like E-yi". Max also has this pair of red gym shorts with a football, baseball, and a soccer ball on the leg, and they are his favorite, because Eli has red gym shorts. Chad's mom found these for Max 2 summers ago- long before they actually fit Max- but he has always known they were waiting for him in his drawer. Well let's just say that these big tall socks and these red shorts have created a little chaos around here....
It started on Wednesday when Max woke up from his nap- I pulled out some shorts for him to put on but he NEEDED his red shorts-- I quickly said that they didn't match his shirt he was already wearing and that he didn't have a shirt that matched his red shorts anyway. He stopped me dead in my tracks, looked me square in the eye and said "Yes I do- my red Lightening Mcqueen shirt matches my red shorts." I didn't even know what to say-- while technically, they did indeed match as in the same color, I wasn't quite sure how to explain that red on red wasn't exactly the "matching" we were going for. So I resorted to my original explanation-- we already had on a shirt and his navy shorts matched it, and he could pick that outfit another time-- and he went with it AS long as I conceded to the big tall socks, with navy on them, pulled straight up to his knee-- like Eli. And every few minutes, he would stop and re-adjust his socks, pulling them as tall as his possibly could.
And it was with that, that I realized that Max was beginning to weigh in on his fashion and it wasn't going to be good. But I must say, I didn't expect round 2 to strike so suddenly....
The next day, after our morning trip to the gym, Chad called and his day had changed a bit and he was wondering if we could meet him for lunch and bring him his basketball clothes-- so we ran into the grocery store quick, stopped by the house long enough for me to get Jack's lunch together, put the groceries away, and pack a bag for Chad, and started back to the car. I called for Max to come down and he said "help please Mom"-- we've been working on that for like 383837 years-- the asking for help first, instead of whining-- so I put my stuff down and went upstairs. He was in his room, with his red shorts and his red Lightening McQueen shirt and he wanted help putting them on because "Daddy would love his red shorts."
In my head, I began self talk immediately. "Lauren, while your son is a reflection of you, his grooming and his (non-matching) outfits don't make you who you are. Are you really going to be such a control freak that you can't let him be himself? And he's so proud and so excited-- are you going to squash that? It's his Dad for pete's sake-- why do you care what anyone else thinks? Get over yourself! Look at those precious eyes-- and those cheeks.... and that smile.... he's waiting for your approval Lauren. He's WAITING..."
So I went with "that's a great idea Max-- I'll help you quick then we've got to go meet Daddy" while biting my tongue just a bit, and smiling myself on the inside at this little goober :) He had to wear tall socks again too-- like E-yi.... and his glasses (like Gabe).
And he was BY FAR the cutest kid at the Chick-Fil-A-- and his Daddy loved the look he was rocking.
This is just the beginning of his favorite shorts-- the hat and the shades-- the big tall socks-- and it's also the beginning of him asserting his opinion on his fashion, among other things. I just pray for wisdom to know which battles are worth fighting-- I'm so glad I realized this was NOT one of those before it was too late. Could you imagine messing with the smile on that face??