Wednesday, June 10, 2009

How far is too far?

Ok, here is the situation. Having 3 kids in 4 years teaches you to pick your battles wisely. Very Wisely. Otherwise, you are sure to be in constant battle over something.

One of the areas I have never seen necessary to battle over is clothing. Ever since Nicki has been old enough to have the desire to pick out her own clothes in the morning, I have let her dress herself. As long as the clothes are weather appropriate (much more of an issue after we left San Diego!) I keep my mouth shut about her choices. Always. Even if we are going to a birthday party. Even if my in-laws are coming over. Even if people are going to think I must have dressed her myself in the dark. Does she always match? No. Does she look ridiculous? Sometimes. Is she happy with how she looks? Always. So far so good...

Enter Gabe. Gabe has never showed much interest in picking out what to wear each day, so I usually do it for him. He seems oblivious to my choices most of the time - clothes mean nothing to him. What he loves to do is accessorize. Yes, you read that right. My son is into accessories. He loves wearing necklaces, bracelets, head bands, tiaras, and most of all tutus. And I haven't seen a reason to stop him. We have made many trips out with him sporting a pink tutu over his sweatpants, earning us many stares and the occasional comment from passerby. But he is happy as a clam, so I am too. So until now, my "no battle" philosophy had been going pretty smoothly. I have now been blindsided however by something I really didn't see coming.

A bit of history first: Gabe will be turning 3 in a few months. He is not yet potty trained. Unlike Nicki who potty trained in only 3 days at the age of 20 months, Gabe has shown no desire at all to use the potty and refuses any suggestion I might make to that effect. Periodically I will mention something or other about being a big boy now or getting to wear underwear, but he always just says "No thanks." At least he's polite about it I guess. This is the same dance we have been doing for over a year now.

Yesterday however when I mentioned the possibility of him wearing underwear for the gazillionth time, his interest seemed to be piqued. I perked up at the thought of possibly getting somewhere, so I asked him what kind of big boy underwear he would like to wear when he learns to use the potty. His response? "Belle underwear." Yup, that's right, my son wants to wear Disney Princess panties and actually went on to tell me how he would never ever pee or poop in his Belle panties because he loves her so much. I suggested that perhaps he might also like some Lightening McQueen, or Spiderman or Curious George underwear. No go. He only wants Belle.

Now what do I do?! This is the first time he has EVER even remotely shown any interest at all in using the potty. My first instinct is to jump all over it before the moment passes, buy him 10 packages of Belle panties and get this ball rolling. But part of me just can't do it. As liberal as I am, I just don't know how I would feel seeing a delicate pink waistband peeking out of the top of his camouflage pants. I need to think about this some more...