Why is it so Freaking Hard to get my Kids Dressed??!!

This morning everyone woke up late and tired. Thank you daylight savings. Usually I don’t care if we over-sleep: I’m a stay-at-home mom and my kids are in kindergarten and preschool. The late slip I have to get from the school secretary and then give to my son’s teacher is annoying, but no biggie. I knew the whole Permanent Record thing was a load of crap by the time I was in 7th grade so I’m not getting all worked-up about my 6 year-old missing the first 10 minutes of “get your hand out of your pants/nose/applesauce” now and then.

Today, however, his class has a field trip to the planetarium and I do not want to deal with massive melt-down if he misses it. Yes, I could drive him to the planetarium, but we all know that the best part of a field trip is the bus ride. We need to hustle.

So I grab clothes for both boys and deliver them to the dining room table where they are eating breakfast/demonstrating their best ninja moves for the cat. I fly around the kitchen slapping meat and mayo on bread while singing/yelling “Get dressed, get dressed, get dressed!”

My 4 year-old son, Doodlebug, will wear anything but insists I help with everything except button-down shirts. Underwear and sweat pants, hell no!; but he’s all over a plaid shirt with six tiny buttons. If you have ever seen a 4 year-old button his own shirt then you know it takes slightly longer than continental drift. And if you have ever tried to help a 4 year-old do something he wants to do himself and lived to tell about it–well then I’m guessing you now walk with limp.

My 6 year-old son, Goofus, (who is really my 12 year-old daughter in disguise) is very picky about his wardrobe. He announces he will not wear the sweatshirt I’ve picked out because (and I’m totally not kidding here) “it makes him look fat.” He has no problem, however, with all of his pants being 3 inches too short. “Fine!” I say, “Just go find a shirt, any shirt, we are late! Hurry!” “Okay!” he yells and scoots, slug style, down the hall on his belly. Awesome. Meanwhile, his brother has almost conquered the first button on his shirt; only 5 more to go.

Eventually we are all in the car and I somehow manage to remember my checkbook for the field trip fee. I walk Goofus into school, the secretary writes his late note, and I write 3 checks because apparently field trip and school lunch fees go to different places–neither of which are the school. Whatever; the fees are paid and I’ve just made a $3 donation to the school which I’m sure I’ll be getting a thank you note for any day.

Back in the car, Doodlebug is almost done with button #2. Thankfully, his preschool teacher is very laid back about when we arrive and I can relax. We get there in time to enjoy a short chat with another mom I’ve just met. I smile as I return to my car, confident that it’s not too late to reclaim this day. At the car I catch a glimpse of myself in the window and see that my scoop-neck sweater is yanked down far enough to leave one of my ratty-bra-covered boobs completely exposed. Awesome.

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Why is it so Freaking Hard to get my Kids Dressed??!!

  1. Kathryn Frost

    This is my day. Nearly everyday and it makes me nuts! Thank you for reminding me how funny it is when it’s someone else. And that I’m not alone in the boat.

  2. Amy Clancy

    This is hilarious. I’m constantly late and always struggle with getting a picky 4 1/2 year old dressed in a reasonable amount of time. I haven’t seen the slug crawl yet but I’m sure it’s in my future. He’s probably just saving it for a special morning like your son did. ; )

  3. Ashly

    I’ve been through this with my nearly 5 year old niece. I spend nearly a decade getting her dressed, and then I go to work where I spend decades doing the same for octogenarians.

  4. Amber

    I also have a 4 and 6 year old, and struggle with the same things (although my younger is a boy, and older is a girl). Nice to hear about the struggle in your words, you make it all sound funny, and it’s good to hear I’m not alone!

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