The other day I was getting Stella dressed, and when I put her shirt (18-month size, I might add) on her, I realized that the shirt was short on her. There she was- stomach hanging out. And it sent me reeling into my past.
The image of Stella sent me back specifically to my sophomore year of high school. You see, I am very long-waisted. I have always had trouble finding shirts that are long enough. And not being the type that likes to purposely bare my midriff, I have spent my entire life figuring out ways to wear shirts that are plenty long enough.
This particular day, I was called to the counselor's office. Being a perfectionist/goody-two shoes, this shook me to my core. What had I done? I couldn't even imagine. When I walked into her office, she said that she had seen me earlier in the hallway with my midriff showing. I was mortified. In no way was this intentional. I just hadn't perfected the "finding-shirts-that-are-plenty-long-enough" technique. It would still take me a couple of years. And to mortify me even more, she made me raise my arms above my head to prove the point that if I were to raise my hands above my head, my shirt should not reveal any skin. Easy for her to say with her midget-sized torso.
So she sent me home to change my shirt. I cried the whole way home and the whole back to school. I even think I put on one of my 6' 6'' brother's t-shirts just to ensure that that would never happen again. When she saw me later that day with an XXL shirt down to my knees, I think she felt bad. Which she should've, making me raise my hands above my embarrassed face and all.
So the other day when I saw my daughter, I saw myself. And I tried to make her raise her hands above her head to warn her that this could happen to her in the future. But she just laughed. And continued chewing on her pen. And I began lecturing her on good fashion, modesty and the beauty of extra-long tank tops from old navy.
And she just laughed.