Fall can be such a marvelous time of year. Cool crisp morning breezes. The wonderful smell of leaves changing into bright reds, oranges, yellows and purples. But when you have an SPD kiddo, it is also a count down to clothing hell.
My child is tactile defensive, which means, if it was up to him, he would spend the entire day completely naked. The very fact that he is willing to put on shorts and a t-shirt is nothing less than a miracle. As the cool days close upon us, I dread when he will have to start wearing long sleeved shirts, jackets, and above all, pants.
When he three, before we understood what was going on, I would become unbearably frustrated at his refusal to wear pants. I spent weeks upon weeks bribing, begging, pleading and crying for him to put on his pants. Of course, he was too young and unable to tell me why he could not wear his jeans or corduroys or sweat pants. But finally he was able to explain in a few simple words. “My pants aren’t pretty,” he said. Say wha?
“My pants aren’t pretty.” All of the girls at his school had decorated pants with multi-colored flowers embroidered on the pockets as well as magical leaves that blossomed into bright pink, orange, purple, blue and yellow patterns. His pants? Boring! Brown, dark blue, gray. What a snoozefest.
In that moment of desperation, I became determined to figure out a way to make his pants pretty, entering into a world I have rarely had the courage to address. Oh yes, I’m talking about the craft store!
Some people have a natural ability for crafts. They wake up in the morning with creativity oozing out their fingertips, putting together cornucopias of projects. I, on the other hand, barely passed elementary school art. If not for the A in effort, I think I might have never made it past fourth grade.
And so, off to the craft store i went looking for patches to put onto his drab pants. Once I got there, I quickly realized the only people who put patches on their pants are girls. While my son wanted “pretty” pants, he wasn’t going to put up with the fragile, delicate florals offered in the isles. Thankfully, amidst the princess patches, I was able to find some boy-like pieces — hot rod cars, flames, skulls and crossbones, trucks, bugs and the initial V for Vman.
During the course of two days, I sewed my underutilized fingers into a throbbing mess to create masterpieces. To my surprise, the patches overrode the uncomfortableness of the pants. In wonder and awe, he petted the corduroys and happily put them on to display how absolutely, undeniably, powerfully cool he truly was.
Now he’s six and not falling for the patches anymore. The very thought of putting on a long-sleeved shirt drew tears of agony this week. I’m not sure how I will approach clothing this winter. All I know is, one Fall, I got it right.