|That's me on he right. When i was still shorter than my big sis.|
My kids are super duper cute. I don’t feel that humility is necessary in this regard; it’s just a statement of fact. Yet I can’t help but wonder how appearances will change in the years to come. I was also a pretty cute little kid, until my big girl teeth came in and I started making fashion choices for myself. Then I went through several horrendously awkward phases from 3rd grade to 8th grade, at which point my teen years brought a whole new set of styles.
|2nd grade: still cute|
|3rd grade: starting to go awry. Don't you just love the side pony and amazing 80s sweater?|
|4th grade. Nice outfit.|
Then came the bangs and braces of middle school. I had braces for just two or three years, rubber bands and all, which were the perfect complement to my huge bangs and du roll. (I think that’s what you call the hairstyle where you make a ponytail but don’t pull it through all the way the second time, leaving you with this loopy bun thing.) Remember that? And remember when giant bangs were the thing? As much as my folks hated them, I had that fad nailed. I recall being asked all the time just how I styled my bangs so perfectly. I don’t know what answer I furnished at the time, but the truth is that I used a whole can of hairspray each morning and avoided the slightest breeze like the plague. I also spent hours on them every day. And beneath my glorious bang dome, lurked numerous purple curling iron burns.
|Looking hot in 6th grade|
|Apparently I wasn't a fan of my yearbook photo?|
And let’s not forget the skater grunge fashion of the 90s: plaid flannel shirts and massively wide jeans that covered your shoes. If you were that cool. Remember JNCOs? I was beyond thrilled if my mom agreed to splurge on the brand, but often had to wear knock-off wide-leg jeans that completely covered my knock-off Vans. My best friend’s grandpa called me “Droopy Drawers”, a label that made me proud. Strangely.
I remember when the more preppy girls started wearing flared jeans and sweaters; I vowed to never wear flared jeans. I also vowed to shun skinny jeans when they re-emerged in the 2000s, but neither vow really stuck. Peer/societal pressure, y’all. Between 7th and 8th grade, I got my braces removed and chopped off all my hair. (Other than a few trial grow-outs here and there, I’ve pretty much had the same haircut since.) One particularly intelligent classmate of mine was shocked at the things I had in common with another girl who had attended the year before—we even the same name and were both good at art! Yeah, that other girl was me, but apparently I looked so different people thought I was a new student.
Through high school I had a schizophrenic alternative style: some days skaterish, others punkish, occasionally raverish—despite never actually skateboarding or doing ecstasy. Well, I guess I was moderately mainstream in 8th and 9th grade, even sporting the occasional crop top (oh the flat, flawless belly of youth!) or floral print now and then, but after switching schools I switched gears. I suppose I was inspired by hormones, teen and artistic angst, the desire to separate myself from my popular then-blonde sister, and the need to rebel against my middle class religious upbringing. Who knows.
In any case, I rocked the combat boots, the uber chunk heels; I had this one pair of fire engine red shiny shoes with that awful wide square toe and the giant block heel that I loooooved. I had the red hair, the orange hair, the purple hair, the black hair—either manically hacked with scissors or buzzed with the 1” clippers by yours truly. One of my fondest memories is my wearing a bright red dress to prom, with my inch-long black hair, teamed up with my punky boyfriend in his black suit and bright red foot-tall mohawk and big ol' septum piercing. (How I ended up married to a hippie cowboy, we’ll never know. Other than the opposites attract thing I suppose…)
I mellowed a bit in college; I let my hair grow into its natural brown, and settled into the thrift shop boho style that I still sort of wear today. There was a decade-long hiatus in which I let my hair stay natural. There was also a perm in there somewhere. Bad idea. I grew it out almost waist-long after getting married, you know, trying to be a grown-up lady…until I got pregnant with #2 and chopped it off again. Now that I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for a year I find myself reverting to self-inflicted haircuts and the desire to dye it more interesting colors again. Now I rebel against domesticity and mediocrity and boredom by Pinteresting tattoos I’ll probably never get and by having other peoples’ babies. L.O.L.
|Freshman year in college|
Maybe our kiddos will be easy like he was (from a parenting perspective anyway…the wifely perspective is a whole other thing). Although the tremendous strong-willed independence possessed by both wee babes could foreshadow trouble. They are already very clearly passionate individuals, very loudly and forcefully expressing the whole color wheel of emotion. Not to mention they are already starting to feel strongly about their clothes: Tuesday refuses to wear anything but “pretty dresses” and Dirt refuses to wear anything that doesn’t have a shark or an alligator or a T-Rex on it. Can’t wait to see what fashion battles we’ll have in the future…and what sort of ridiculous fads will be in vogue.
I guess, if nothing else, we can have a pile of embarrassing photos from all their embarrassing phases in the end, and they can write self-deprecating blogs lamenting their style choices as adults. That could be fun.