Like so many houses with school-age kids, my house is a little crazy in the morning. Between breakfast (your only cereal choice today is Apple Jacks. Deal with it.), brushing teeth (yes, you must use toothpaste), taming pig tails (I’m sorry it hurts but perhaps if you brushed your hair more than once a day there wouldn’t be enough knots for the entire US Navy in your hair), packing lunch (no, you may not bring half of your Easter candy to school today), and all those other little things (like learning how to tie shoelaces – finally!), it’s enough to make a Mom want to pull out her recently-dyed hair. Clothing choices tends to be an issue in the morning. I admit to being a bit of a control freak when it comes to my daughter’s clothes, though not nearly as controlling as some moms I’ve run into. But I spent perfectly good money on clothes and I want her to look presentable. Yes, I realize that I need to let her become her own person, develop her own style, etc. But there are limits.
1. I want you to match.
Sorry, it’s true. You need to understand right from the beginning that polka dotted pants do not go with a striped shirt. You want to look like Punky Brewster? Fine with me. But you need to commit to it so that it looks like a definitive choice instead of looking like you got dressed in the dark.
2. There will be no words across your caboose.
There’s no need for an 8-year-old to have “flirty”, “pretty”, or “sassy” on her pants. If I wanted words across your backside, I’d have them tattoed there.
3. You have to be fully dressed.
In other words, you do not get to wear a pair of tights with a long top. If those tights are meant to have a skirt or shorts over them, put something over them!
4. If it looks like it belongs on someone who’s fifteen, it does not belong on you.
I get the last vote. That’s all there is to it. I will never make my child wear something she hates (come on, we all have that picture of ourselves in the outfit our mom forced us to wear.) but I get veto power on any outfit or individual article of clothing. And the simple fact is, if a teenager could wear it, my 8-year-old will not.
5. You will not smoke.
And by that, I mean that the words “smokin’ hot” should never, EVER, EVER come out of your 8-year-old mouth.
The other morning, when I asked her what she wanted to wear to school she said, “I don’t know. Something smokin’ hot.” Um, what?! “Yeah, you know, when the boys say you look smokin’ hot.” Again, what?! So I ask her what she actually means by those words and she couldn’t tell me anything more than ‘looking pretty’. But I admit, I was not expecting this, especially not before my first cup of coffee. My Little Miss is a girlie girl who loves nail polish, jewelry, lip gloss, dresses and shoes. But the idea of her wanting to look a certain way so someone would think she was “smokin’ hot”, isn’t that supposed to come with the teen years? I wasn’t ready for it at 8. I think it’s time for another conversation about being happy with the assets nature gave her and the idea that she doesn’t have to look a certain way for anyone….except me.