Abby and I have gone to war over clothing.
She and all of her lively skin neurons cannot deal with pants. She will wear skirts, shorts, knee-high socks, leg warmers but not actual pants. This isn't normally a problem since we live in the south now. However, this winter has been colder than normal, dipping into the 40s with cold rain at times, and she still refuses to cover those legs. For the most part I back off and let her walk out into the frosty air in her Pippi Longstocking getups and go home to drown my mom guilt in tea.
I let her sort through her bureau and find what works. Sometimes it's this:
Other times I hear her in her room, tearful and standing in her undies looking around for the "purple skirt with the stripes," that she rejected just yesterday. It's like she's looking for something that doesn't exist....all the time.
It's like she's me.
I hate it when I see her be me. I hate it that this drives me so crazy that I walk out of her room spitting mad because WTF, they are just pants. I hate it when I am reminded of what hurts by watching what is hurting her.
We are both overly sensitive souls. The main difference is Abby needs LOTS of outside stimuli to function whereas I need LOTS of inside quiet to be ok. Other than that, I can relate. I feel for this child because I hate pants too.
When I was younger I would stand in my room, changing outfits hundreds of times because nothing felt right. At the time I thought it was just a wardrobe war. Now, with some distance between me and my teenage closet, I realize I was uncomfortable in general. Something was always too tight, too baggy, too squeezy, too bunchy, and eventually I'd throw on some leggings and "borrow" my uncle's baggy sweater. In my quest to find the perfect pants, I found a proverbial bag to throw over my body so nobody would see me there. Thankfully it was the 80s so this passed high school muster.
My Abby is struggling through her field of discomfort now. It is beginning with pants but it won't end there. And I don't know how to let her figure it out herself. Isn't it my job to help her? Isn't it my role to help her be comfortable? Be ok with everything?
I want to help her. I want to purchase the exact thing she can wear because it's 100% cotton, seamless, weightless, and sparkly. I want to be her Pants Hero. Watching my girl wind up frustrated and distraught because she just can't get comfortable for the public is hard. But it's necessary. She has to push through itchy, scary, rude, bunchy, "blooshy and paf *as she calls it*" to get back to ease. Ease with herself in her own skin.
Life is going to give her pants.
I just hope she discovers a love for leggings.