Sunday, March 25, 2012

Why I Hate Spring

Birdie smelling the flowers,  Princess hiding
Aaaaahhh!  Spring is in the air...  *cough* Unfortunately, spring has been in the air for the last three weeks-- which is three weeks early.  I now know for certain that that damn Punxsutawney groundhog doesn't know a single thing about the weather.  I do know he is A LIAR!!!  I was so looking forward to six more weeks of winter...  Now don't get me wrong, I love sunshine and warm weather as much as the next person.  I.  Just.  Hate.  Spring.  It makes me miserable.

The beautiful weather and colorful blossoms that mark spring's arrival are just harbingers of my impending misery.  As I watch the grass turn greener, I can feel my skin crawling and itching.  I try to look through my kitchen window to observe spring from the safety of my home, only to find that my window is coated with a thick layer of pollen... and once the pollen arrives I am doomed.

Where there is pollen, there is copious amounts of yuck!  I can feel my the tightness in my ears and pressure behind my eyeballs that marks the beginning of at least two months of sniffles and scratching-- and not just for me, but for just about everyone I know (including my little ladies).  The zombie-like looks on the faces at school, tissues clutched (or being forced into) little hands everywhere you look, snot dripping from stuffy noses, and lots of dragon breath from all the mouth-breathing.  Ugh!  Couple that with all the skin scratching and red, puffy eyes and I feel like I am in the midst of some horrible contagion, which does not improve my allergy state of mind.

Allergy faces
Adding to the misery of allergy season is the impending Spring Break at school.  Normally polite, well-behaved students regress into bouncing, blabbering idiots for the warm weather weeks leading up to the break.  The children that usually have behavior issues are so out of control at this point that many teachers wonder will these kids make it all the way to the break without serving jail time.  Teachers find themselves less patient and more surly this time of year as well.  Is this loss of self-control across the board somehow a result of the weather change and allergens painting our lungs, skin, and sinuses?  My friend seems to think so and I believe she is onto something.  There has to be more to this feeling of wildness and irritability than just excitement for a week of vacation.

But, I digress-- this is about how much I hate spring, not solving the mysteries of Spring Fever.

Don't they just look crazy in this picture?
As miserable as spring allergies and Spring Fever are, my least favorite part of this season is actually the wardrobe changes-- both for me and my kids.  Back in my twenties, in the pre-kids era of my life, the wardrobe changes that come with the seasons were a breeze.  I would simply put away one season's clothes and pull out the next-- no worries of trying things on or doing anything special in preparation for this event, other than making room in my closet.  Weeeellllll... it seems that my new, "improved?" (hardly) mommy body doesn't work that way.  Every fall, when the weather turns cold, my derriere packs on 3-5 pounds of insulation that I can, apparently, not live without.  When the weather turns warmer, that 3-5 pounds comes off fairly quickly.  However, it seems that most of that weight I shed in early spring falls out of my bra instead of my pants.  At the rate I'm going, in a few more years I will be nothing more than a giant walking ass with a head levitating about 2 feet above it.  Beautiful image, huh?  Needless to say, trying on last year's spring clothes can get depressing.  It takes lots of work and pining for baked good to get last year's pants to fit, and many a creative adjustment to make some of last year's tops fit.  I know-- TMI-- but it sucks the joy right out of warmer weather!

My wardrobe change woes are nothing compared to my Princess's.  All I have to worry about is whether or not I can squeeze into my clothes.  Princess, on the other hand, has a plethora of factors working against her during wardrobe changing season.  The most obvious issue for Princess (and Birdie) is that she is growing-- and at warp speed, I might add.  Very little of her clothing from last summer still fits, and it certainly doesn't fit in the same way.  This means shopping-- which is a total freakin' nightmare!

Princess's outfit of choice for many months
Princess has several, ummm... requirements, we could call them, for what she can and will wear.  There is obviously no limitations on how she will wear her clothes, as I pointed out in my previous post Gettin' Gussied Up, but I have to find some things she'll agree to wear first.  When shopping for Princess, clothes must not have buttons (real or decorative) or zippers.  Real buttons, especially on pants, are uncomfortable.  Fake buttons are "a lie" and must not be present on clothes, mainly because a friend or relative may get the mistaken impression that real buttons are now ok on her clothing.  Same goes for zippers on pants, but they are okay on jackets.  Clothes must also not be scratchy or tight, which is tough considering Princess's penchant for lacy things and leggings.  Tags may not be "pokey".  Oh, and pants and long-sleeved shirts have to go all the way to ankles and wrists;  otherwise, Princess spends all day tugging and yanking on sleeves and pantlegs to put them in the right place.

If you haven't already figured this out, shopping for Princess SUCKS!

With all the "requirements" imposed on Princess's wardrobe, we spend a lot of time buying and trying on clothes this time of year.  I am no longer brave enough to have Princess try on clothes at the store.  My last two episodes in the Target dressing room ended with so much crying, screaming, and foot stomping that I was sure CPS was going to be waiting outside the door to take away my obviously abused child.  At one point during the last visit to a dressing room, I heard a timid knock on the door followed by an even more timid "is everything alright in there?"  Well, if you have to ask... Now I just spend the first month of warm weather buying new clothes I think will work and returning all the ones that fail to pass the test.

Birdie's summer attire
Fortunately, Birdie is much easier to clothe in general (as long as I accept the fact that I am always going to have to see 3 inches of her butt crack whenever she bends over).  Her clothing requirements are much easier:  no itchy tags, not much purple or pink please, no popstar pictures, and no skirts without built-in shorts.  She prefers shirts with animals on them or some sort of save-the-world message and she loves camo prints.  Piece of cake in comparison to her sister.

Once we get the wardrobe all worked out, I still have to contend with the weeks of getting used to how the new clothes feel.  This is a big deal for kids with sensory issues.  It is very hard for Princess to get used to having legs and arms bare after months of being covered from head to toe.  A breeze over bare arms makes Princess complain that a shirt is itchy.  A cold or hot surface against bare legs makes her shorts "too thin" or "too short" or "too long" because she isn't feeling the same sensation over her whole leg.  This happens quite often in the morning while dressing for school.  The outfit that was "perfect" last night is "NOT WORKING!" now, either because Princess thinks she is "shaped differently now than last night" or because the outfit is "not even" today.  ("Not even" can mean a lot of things, like tighter on one arm/leg than the other, or shorter on one side than the other.  Luckily-- I guess-- "not even" is not a permanent state of being and that outfit may still be worn on another day when Princess is less sensitive.)
New clothes for all

I would have never imagined that getting dressed and changing from cold-weather to warm-weather clothes could inspire so much drama!  Would you?  I am sure hopeful that this will get better with age for my lovely Princess.  Until then, I am off to begin the search for weather-appropriate attire that passes the test for my ladies.  Wish me luck!

And, yes, I REALLY DO hate spring-- except for the sunshine.

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