In Canada, we celebrate four, distinct seasons throughout the year.
In our house, this represents four, distinct tantrums ranging in severity depending on temperature, shoe size and the state of an older sibling’s hand-me-downs.
This week, there was snow on the ground and it appeared to be the real kind that feels cold and when you roll around in it, it makes your pants wet and brings anger and illness into our home.
I dove head first with ski goggles and balaclava into the seasonal bins marked “Winter” (followed by several graphics of tears written with a Sharpie) to find a pair of snow pants our six year old could wear to school.
The first attempt of the season to wrestle a pair of snow pants onto a child in our home plays out a little like this;
“Mommy, these don’t fit. They do NOT fit. They don’t fit over my shoes.”
“Chloe, they do fit. They DO fit. You haven’t tried them on. They aren’t meant to be worn over shoes.”
“These straps are too loose! They’re too tight and too loose.” (Child squirming on the ground pulling at crossed suspender straps over shoulders and doing a decent “worm” across the kitchen floor).
“Chloe, I can work with the straps, worm closer to me.”
Child inchworms over to my feet, head then chest then killer kick-out.
“They’re too long!”
“They are just the right length. We won’t know how they feel until you put on your boots.”
I hear the bus outside the door, there is no chance we are getting to school on time.
“Why don’t sisters have to wear snow pants?”
“Sisters are going to carry their snow pants.”
Child senses favouritism, oppression, isolation of the worst kind—the-only-kid-in-the-house-who-has-to-wear-snow-pants-to-school-kind.
Next step: the lies.
“Chloe, your teacher sent a note home asking all students to arrive at school wearing snow pants.” Sorry to Chloe’s teacher but I had to throw someone under the bus….that has already left the foot of my driveway to head to school.
For the first winter ever, these snow pants might actually be a perfect fit but I forgot the step where you put the hooded sweatshirt on before you put on the snow pants so now we are attempting to put on a garment of clothing over top of the straps, followed by a coat and this is going to require some duct tape and at least two navy seals.
After the boots are on and the child has no access to the part of their knees that bend, she leans forward to notice the cute part, the top part, the fluffy, furry, pink part of her boots is buried somewhere under these rotten, teacher-enforced, snow pants.
We will arrive at school sometime around lunch. Most of the kids will be wearing snow pants, a few will be in sandals and my kid will melt down all again tomorrow.
In fact, she will do it all again until the bin marked “Spring” arrives in our hallway and we will hire a family therapist to discuss 101 ways to wear a rain poncho.
Also, photo of the above, “happy baby” in a white snow suit is a likeness. This is a paid actor.