Sunday, December 29, 2013

So Nice

My children hate getting dressed.  They would wear the same ratty pair of pajamas day after day after day if I didn't wrench them off and explain all the reasons why regular clothes are necessary.  My oldest has always fought it because of comfort.  If he's changing from pajamas to sweatpants, no problem.  Jeans?  We'll have to talk about that one.  My youngest has different reasons for his dislike of a clothing change.  He hates to be cold.

From the time he was a tiny baby, he has hated being cold.  I had to put off swimming lessons for a full month until our pool warmed to 85 degrees last summer.  He simply refused to get in the pool without crying out, "MAMA  COOOOOLD!!"  Getting dressed evokes the same response as an icy pool.  I do my best to be accomodating but sometimes it just gets old.  Put your pants on, pal.  They will warm up eventually.  I joked with my mom that I needed to get him a towel warmer from Sky Mall just to make it easier.  Then I realized I already had one - a dryer.

I threw his clothes in there this morning then proceeded to help him get this jammies off.  I grabbed the clothes after a minute or two and told him they were warmed up from the dryer.  The most tender look crossed his face and he touched my cheek with his palm.  "Mama, love you.  Warm up mine clothes.  So nice," he said.  He wrapped me in a hug then got his clothes on without a battle.

Throwing those clothes in the dryer took me an extra 30 seconds.  I didn't expect it to mean so much to him.  I certainly didn't expect him to tell me how much it meant to him.  It was the most tender moment I've shared with him yet.  I guess sometimes we have to realize that they have needs, too.  Even if they seem silly or annoying to us, the needs are very real to them.  I will only teach them to think about others if I model that behavior.  I hope I was able to do that today for him.

Do your children have any frequent complaints that annoy you?  How can you approach meeting their needs from a new angle?  

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