Terrible things. We are surrounded by terrible things. By “we” I mean all the mothers of boys and by “terrible things” I mean the fashions.
Oh God, the fashions. I made a promise to myself when I found out I was having all boys that I would not bedeck them in T-Rexes and Grave Diggers. I mean, how presumptive? Who am I to say that these guys are paleontologists or gearheads? From what I can tell, the only things they love are stuffing socks in their mouth and ripping out the hair on the back of my neck, and they just don’t make t-shirts about that kind of stuff.
Today I was at Target looking for new towels for the boys, and I found myself standing in front of two options: One, a girly pink towel with a hood made to look like a crown, and the other, a gray towel with a hood that was the head of a great white. Great. So baby girls get to be transformed into princesses as they exit their bath, and baby boys have their heads eaten off by a shark. Really? I mean, it doesn’t rank up there with problems like poverty and hunger and disappearing rainforests, but there is room for improvement in children’s towel designs. That is all I am saying.
But the problem with triplets (oh, there is only one problem as it turns out) is that it costs a small fortune to keep them in matching, brand-new clothes that you have personally selected as the perfect blend of neutral and boring. You basically have to clothe them in whatever other people have given to you or, more realistically, whatever is the closest thing you can reach that is made from a fabric-like substance.
I have scoured sales at Baby Gap to get these guys organic, mint green onesies with stars and yellow-striped footy pajamas in groups of three. I lovingly dress them in a soft and sweet color palette and then marvel at how adorable and sexually ambiguous they look, but every time, EVERY DAMN TIME, someone pukes or sharts and they end up wearing a shirt with a football, Sponge Bob and a skull riding around in a military tank, with a matching pair of track pants. Sigh.
OK, let me just state for the record that I am not someone who believes in decimating gender stereotypes by dressing boys in pink and buying them Barbies. I think that we are all programmed to like what we like, and that there is something very biological that makes most girls respond favorably to pink and purple and all things beautiful, and makes many boys want to dress like Superheroes and wipe boogers on you. I love that dichotomy, and I love when people unexpectedly depart from it. Kudos, everyone.
I just have to take issue with this onesie I have. It is from a pack of three with an automobile theme. The other two each have a single car on them, which is fine and whatever. This one has a fleet of ambulances. Why do you think I want to dress my children in ambulances, Carter’s? Cause I really feel like I don’t.
I know that once my children find their words, they will demand clothing with cars and aliens and anything that is loud and can destroy all that is around it. I’m fine with it, really. But now, when they are peachy, snuggly little things with cheeks too fat for their smiles, I don’t really want to think about their future need for speed or the military or the hospital when I look at them. I don’t often dress them in skulls because that is what happens when you die and all your skin rots off your face and it just clashes with their youth and vigor. And I don’t want to even pretend that a shark may some day bite off their head.
I want to believe they will always be protected from death and/or destruction. That just because they are boys, they don’t have to be toughened up as soon as they emerge from their amniotic sac. Can’t they just be pure and unspoiled and wear mint green for a little while? And maybe save the onesies with the zombies playing flaming guitars above the words, “I’ve got an axe to grind” (or something equally dumb) for when they are a little older?
But wait, you say that onesie is only $4? Aw, eff it. I’ll take three.