To be sung to the tune of “You Only Live Twice” from James Bond: Sheeeeeee only wears piiiiiiiiink….
When I was a little girl, my favorite color was red. Fire-engine red. I wanted to paint my room red; my mother refused, saying it would “make her crazy,” whatever that meant. And although I lived in a blue, yellow, and white room, my soul was red. Although I wore other colors, my favorite color was, without question, red. Red: uncompromising, loud, fiery, brazen. I thought red was the most wonderful color in the world. One day, I told myself, I would have a red house, and red dresses, and red roses would be given to me on a daily basis by adoring fans. Red.
It was sometime this fall that my 2-year-old daughter started rejecting the clothes I took out for her. “Pink,” she said. Sometimes, I can’t understand what she says due to some articulation issues, but no issue here. “PINK,” she said. “Please?” I said. “Please,” she said. Fine. And thus began what is going on five months of ONLY WEARING PINK.
Pink is not my favorite color. It never was. But when I had my first girl after two boys, it didn’t take long before I felt seriously overdosed on pink. I felt like I was trapped in a Clockwork Orange universe where rose-colored glasses were being strapped to my pried-open eyeballs. Everything was pink: the blankets, the hats, the sweaters, the swaddles. It was refreshing for a few weeks after all blues and browns, but after a while, I just couldn’t take it. So my rebellion was to branch out, and dress my girls in—gasp!—a mix of colors. Because who cared? And how cute did my daughter look in a little brown tweed jumper?
Fast forward a few kids. I no longer care about clothes—at least, I think of myself as someone who no longer cares about clothes. I prefer clothing to be seasonally appropriate, but that’s pretty much my only rule. So why does it bother me so much that now, I have a 2-year-old girl possessed by pink?
Maybe it’s because, since she’s the fifth kid, she is pretty much dressed exclusively in hand-me-downs—very few of which are pink. Hence, despite having a potential wardrobe more extensive than my own, she wears about four different outfits in rotation. Despite me “not caring about clothes,” I find that this sort of bothers me.
Maybe it’s because it’s not just pink that is her favorite color, but it is the particularly offensive shade of pink that is Pepto Bismol pink. In your face pink. Wake up your eyeballs pink.
And maybe—just maybe—it’s because it is a foreshadowing of the more important, more serious wars we have to come. As a mom of older kids as well as younger kids, I am only getting the slightest taste of “bigger kids, bigger problems,” but I do believe it is true.
Do I think it’s great that she’s so determined and knows who she is and what she wants? Sure. Do I think it really matters what she wears to go to her non-affairs of state, like the playground and preschool? No. Am I bothered that it matters so much to her? Kind of. Am I bothered that it matters so much to me that it matters so much to her? Definitely.
Because soon enough, our real fights will begin. So I’m willing to let this one slide. Is this a show of weakness or of strength? Only time will tell.
I’m just holding out hope that in a few weeks, maybe we’ll move on to purple.