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They say you pick your battles. I have picked the wardrobe battle. It’s important enough to me to wage war against my 13 year old. I don’t micromanage my kids but I will engage in a power struggle over clothing. Being the mom, I win every time. Bwah ha ha ha!

This morning Gavin opened the front door to check the outside temperature. Unfortunately the alarm was still set so he had to quickly disarm it. He put on a pair of denim shorts and told his dad

Gavin: It’s supposed to get to 46 degrees today. It seems like shorts weather to me!
Heath: Nope. Go put on long pants.

Long pants were being worn but these negotiations started.

Gavin: I will give you this $20 bill if I can wear shorts the rest of my life.
Heath: No.
Gavin after pulling out another $20 bill: How about $40 for today?
Heath: No.
Gavin: I have to get some more money.
And he walked out of the room.

He came back with $80 and tried again.
Heath: No.

Desperation set in. Gavin started trying to pawn off perceived experiences and any possession he had in exchange for his leg hair freedom. By the way, when Gavin mentioned last night how much he hates long pants Parker said, “Nobody wants to see your monkey legs, man.” The timing along with his deadpan delivery was hysterical.

Gavin: How about $80 and the lion will never be annoying to you again?
(the lion is his stuffed toy he likes to waggle in people’s faces)
Heath: No.
Gavin: Okay, how about I add in my jacket?
Heath: The jacket won’t fit me.
Gavin: Then you can do with it as you see fit.
Heath: No.

I came in late to the failed negotiations. Actually, I didn’t know about the hilarious lengths Gavin was going to in order to get what he wanted. I just knew he was very upset we were making him wear jeans in winter. The nerve of some disconnected parents!

I finally looked at my son and pulled out the white flag. As I started to wave it I asked him if he could put everything away and get into a pair of shorts in two minutes. “It’s time to go to Grandma and Grandpa’s house.”

There are only two instances that Gavin will move with any speed faster than that of an aging sloth.

  1. When he is running.
  2. When he is properly motivated.

Allowing him a day to wear shorts was plenty motivation. He even had a big grin spread across his face as he tied his shoes under his happy, hairy legs.

Me: I will give in on days off from school. But you will wear long pants to school. It is winter! Put on a sweatshirt at least!

I’m sure my acquiescence was in one ear and out the other. That boy got what he wanted so who cares about the future? It will come later. For now … arid bliss.

Christmas should come with a few pleasant surprises for Gavin. I made him two pair of pajama shorts and I even told Grandma that Gavin hates long pants of any kind. He will get a shorter version of the pajama pants she is making for her grandsons.

I think Gavin just runs hotter than the average kid. I understand. I used to be like that myself. Not to the extremes he claims. I wore weather appropriate clothing without complaint. But then again it could be one million degrees outside and my school would not allow shorts. The only day we could wear shorts to school was on Field Day. We would roll up our jeans to our knees to make weird capris in order to beat the heat.

Gavin may have won this round, but school will start back up soon enough and I will be ready. He will wear long pants and wear a dang winter coat if I have anything to say about it. Although I think if Heath knew I was going to give in today, he would have taken the $80 bucks! Ah, the price of freedom.