“He’s never going to learn how to dress properly,” my mom said.
Forgive me if I thought she was referring to Tornado S. Because she’s right. I fail in the way of teaching a child how to put on a shirt and socks. She taught Tornado E one weekend when she was visiting us at the Orange house. I didn’t even watch her because I was too busy with a baby.
But no, she meant Tornado E who on that day was wearing a long-sleeve, blue and white checkered, button-up shirt with orange, black, blue plaid shorts. I didn’t buy either piece of clothing, but he was happy to wear them. I love his fashion sense, braving new fashion trends. Who else would wear scrubs and a cam0 bucket hat? Who else would wear a cape and galoshes? Who else would match plaid with Hawaiian floral? Who else wears a tux to a school function? God, I love that kid.
“Fashion says you can wear prints together now. Lord knows I couldn’t pull it off,” I answered.
My mom rolled her eyes. “How is he ever going to get a girlfriend? He’s going to be weird his whole life,” she countered.
Um, duh. I’m weird. My children have no hope. They are obsessed with Star Wars. They play in fairy wings and nail polish. Their father is carefully teaching them The Lord of the Rings mythology as I teach them real mythology. I can’t wait until we have our own house so they can decorate their room however they want.
But I said, “Girlfriend? He’s six. Besides isn’t that what girlfriends do? They teach boys to dress?”
My mom gave a tortured sigh. She then turned to Tornado E to explain how plaids and checkers don’t match as I buckled Tornado S into the truck.
As we drove away, I looked at Tornado E in the rear view mirror.
“Hey, Tornado E, love, dress how you want. Just remember collared shirts for church.”
“When you get older, we’ll talk about appropriate clothing for school.”
“What do you mean, Mommy?”
“You’ll know in about six years.”
“OK. And Mommy, I love you.”
“I love you too, little dude.”