I will admit, I am pretty controlling about my kids’ clothes. In almost 4 1/2 years of being a parent, there has been just one time that a kid wore pajamas in public (and that was an emergency). Although my style is far more casual after living on the West Coast for almost 10 years, I am still an East Coast/Southern girl at heart, which means we take the time to look presentable before we walk out the door.
I realize my kids are little and in 15 years, I’ll just be happy if Avery wears shorts that cover her back side, but for now, their clothing choices are limited to what I buy. I’m not a fan of superhero t-shirts or brand names splashed across clothing, so those don’t enter my shopping bag. I lay out Clay’s clothes every day, and he puts them on without question. Avery has become more challenging, which started this summer with her “tutu dress” obsession. I’ve realized she just knows what she wants (no idea where she got that from LOL), so I give her a few options each morning. Other than wanting to wear purple Haviana flip-flops every day (even if they don’t match), she is happy as long as she gets to choose.
Today was a different story. Our friends’ daughter outgrew a Snow White dress and gave it to Avery. She tried it on last night then I hid it away at bedtime with the rest of her dress-up clothes. When we went to get dressed this morning, guess what she insisted on? “I’ll wear Snow White dress today, okay, mommy?” I’m not sure what happened. Some crazy woman took over my body and said yes. She asked nicely and didn’t freak out about it, so I said yes. I also said yes to Clay when he asked if we could go to Starbucks for breakfast, so maybe I was just a little weak on a Monday morning.
I’ve seen kids out in public in superhero costumes and princess dresses, and always smiled at them and their parents, though I thought to myself, I will not let that happen. But today, that little blonde girl with big blue eyes, just wanted to be a princess. I wanted that for her, too.
I was a bit embarrassed at Starbucks, sure that the customers would think I had no control over my kid. Here she was dressed in a gown on a random Monday morning! I was shocked by the response to my blonde Snow White. Everyone from the barista to the 300 pound guy getting off a Harley talked to us, smiling at her. I overheard a woman at the table next to me telling her teenagers (a boy and girl, close in age like mine) how much she missed those days. A girl at Clay’s school lit up when she saw her, and squealed, “what a beautiful princess!” Avery smiled and said thank you to everyone.
Control is one thing, but your child’s happiness is another. And I have to say, those interactions and Avery’s response to everyone, made my day. It’s funny what a little princess perspective can do.