Kids get really happy and excited for summer for lots of reasons — ice cream afternoons, swimming, sunshine and no school. My son, however, counts down the days to summer for one major reason and one reason alone… shorts!
Regular readers of The Jenny Evolution know my oldest son Vman, who is now seven years old, has a serious tactile diversion to clothes thanks to his Sensory Processing Disorder. It can be -10 Degrees F and Vman would rather run around naked in the house than put on clothing. Nevermind the fact that he says he’s cold and has to wrap himself up in a blanket. (And don’t even get me started on the fact that it’s my satin comforter he’s taken over!) If he has to choose between chilly toes or any type of clothing, he’ll choose frostbite any day.
Rewind to this winter in the Midwest…. Polar Vortex. Trapped inside the house. The winter that just won’t end. Any of this ring a bell? For those of us with sensory kids who need to be outdoors getting their energy out, this winter was doubly as long. And despite the ridiculously cold weather, most mornings we had to have a “discussion” about Vman wearing his coat.
At least I was smart last year. I took him to the Columbia Sportswear outlet and told him we were not leaving until we had found him a coat. Once he found one and gave it the Vman stamp of approval, I bought them in the next three sizes. So this winter, rather than spending countless hours trying to find a coat, I just pulled out the next size. Getting him to wear it was another story.
One morning after a particularly rough discussion about putting on his jacket, Vman turned to me and said, “Mom. Is it always warm in Miami?”
“Yes, it is,” I replied.
“Then I’m moving to Miami when I get older so I never have to wear another jacket again,” he stated.
The truth is, I completely expect Vman to up and leave Chicagoland the day he graduates high school. He will leave behind all of his clothes (except for a pair of shorts and flip flops) and head toward Miami or some other tropical climate. I won’t be offended. I will have been preparing for that day for years.
Some days I honestly think it would be easier to just up and move to a warmer climate than fight him every day about what he has to wear. Of course, that’s completely unrealistic.
I’m sure by the time he hits high school, Vman will have worn me down. I hear stories from other parents of gangs of boys walking around in sandals and board shorts despite the blanket of snow on the ground. My son will probably be the ring leader and even happier for it.
But now it is summer, and those daily “discussions” are becoming more of a fleeting memory. By the time summer is in full force, I will think about how much I love the Chicagoland area in the summer. And then the air will turn chilly, and we will begin thinking of Miami again.