Pajama Day isn't just about pajamas

Every once in a while, the kids are allowed to wear their pajamas to school for one reason or another.  In lieu of Halloween costumes, they wear pajamas.  To celebrate being drug-free (yes, drug-free in kindergarten, not sure how great an accomplishment this is, but I digress), they get to wear pajamas.

In general, Abby really couldn't care less about what she wears to bed.  She'll wear the nightgown, footies, two pieces, whatever.  Ben, on the other hand, feels passionately about his nighttime attire.  He has always loved footie pajamas, and is on track to continue the love affair well into his adulthood provided we can keep coming up with footies big enough for his continually growing body.  In the summertime, he asks with excited anticipation when it's going to be cold again so he can wear them.  In the winter, when he gets home from school he changes into his footies almost immediately (unless he goes outside to play).  Speaking of outdoor play, in the rare event that it snows, we default to fleece footies as "snow suits" because, well, that's the best we can do in central Georgia.

So, when Pajama Day rolls around at the elementary school, I always get a little nervous because I know what's coming.  Ben is going to want to wear his footies.

When Pajama Day happened in Pre-K, I thought about it, but I didn't worry about it.  Footies at age 4 and 5 are okay.  They're still the "babies" of the school.  Maybe I'm wrong, but footies carry a juvenile air about them, no?

When Pajama Day rolled around in kindergarten, I did worry about it.  I worried about it because he's not the baby of the school anymore.  I worried because I didn't want my precious, footie-loving son to be ridiculed for something about which he feels so passionately.  I worried because I just knew he was going to be the only kindergartner in footie pajamas.  I worried because, sometimes, kids are just mean.

I asked my friends what they would do - let their son wear the footies or not?  The results were split.  At least I knew I wasn't alone in my hesitation about it.

I tried not to let on to Ben about my apprehension as I laid out several non-footie varieties of pajama options in addition to the obvious.  Unwavering, he picked out his favorite red pair of footies from the line-up.  I dropped him off at school that day just like any other day and happily received the usual goodbye wave and over the shoulder "I love you" from him as he confidently walked into the school donning his most-favorite pajamas.

I thought about him several times that day.  I prayed that the other kids would be merciful towards him.  That they wouldn't pick on him for being a 6-year old (who looks more like an 8-year old) "baby" in footie pajamas.  That there might be at least one other child in footies so he wouldn't be alone.

When I got to Ben after school that day, I asked him how Pajama Day went.  "Good."  And since I didn't want to ask if he'd been teased, I asked if anyone liked his footies.  "I don't know."  I asked him if anyone else was wearing footies.  "Yes." PHEW.   I asked him if he had anything good or bad he wanted to share with me.  Then he excitedly told me about his art project.

That's when I realized something.  No.  I realized lots of somethings.  I realized that all of my fretting was good for absolutely nothing.  Not just about footie pajamas, but in life across the board. 

Then Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest? Luke 12:22-26

Touché, Jesus.

I realized that, sometimes, kids aren't mean.  That Ben is a confident, strong boy and at some point in his life, he will be ridiculed.  That's part of living this life.  Even though he's a boy of just six, he will have to figure out his own way on some things, like how to respond if someone pokes fun at his favorite nightwear.  And if his feelings get hurt, he will learn from it, grow from it, and he will get through it.

Pajama Day.  I assure you the powers that be had no idea how educational it would be for me.  And for that matter, neither did I.


Anonymous said...

I absolutely love the way you write. You make valid points throughout your blogs and always make me smile :))

Aneesa Cappellano said...

Loved it! So true! I too fret over my "babies" so much and how they "feel" at school, or if they got their "feelings hurt" or something like that. The momma bear comes out in me if I find out they did and I want to attack whoever did it. But you are so right, most of the time they don't even care about it near as much as we do, or it doesn't even happen. And if it does, they recover...much quicker than we ever thought (that is if they even mention it to us). Worry plagues me, thanks for this reminder of Jesus' words.

Debbie said...

How can one so young be so wise?

This might possibly be my favorite post so far. Considering how many I have loved, that is really saying something.

CLewis said...

Such a great connection. And that is one of my favorite verses to pray on when I am worried. I just love all of the ways God uses our kids to teach us some of life's lessons.

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