A conversation I had with my dear friends last night got me thinking about a childhood memory that has haunted me for decades. When I was young, my beautiful and loving Mum didn’t want me to be cold whilst playing outside in the freezing cold winter at school. Being a girl, she knew that I would be doing cart wheels, tumble turns and hand stands against any brick wall that we could find (many boys engaged in these activities too by the way). In my Primary School in the 80’s, all girls wore dresses. Most girls (including me) hated wearing tights, and spend most of our days itching and pulling at them. So this meant that I regularly went to school with ‘bare legs’ as my Mum would put it, and with that came comfort, but also cold. So my loving Mother decided that instead of sending her daughter to school with cold, bare legs, she would invest in a few pairs of ‘terry towling’ undies that served as ‘bum huggers’.These were worn over the top of underwear to keep my little behind toasty and warm. Little did she know that this little gesture of love and kindness would in fact cause her daughter’s friends to tease her for wearing ‘nappies’ to school.
Each time I did a cartwheel or handstand in the yard, the bright yellow, green and pink terry towelling ‘undies/ bum huggers’ would be on display for all to see. Each time I would be asked ‘do youuuu STILL wear nappies?’ and I would sit confused, knowing full well that my Mum got us to wear them to simply keep us warm. The term ‘fluffy undies’ was coined, and stuck for many years..even till this day. Even those kids who ‘tormented’ me with ‘terry towelling teasing’ have clearly overlooked the fact that their friend was ‘wearing nappies at Primary School’ – they are my closest friends until this day…
It’s not until we have become Mothers however, that we have truly understood these little gestures of Motherly love. I’m truly thankful to my Mum for ‘trying’ to keep me warm all those years ago. In Melbourne today, its nudging 5 degrees at 11am, and it’s almost ‘playtime’ for school kids to go outside. I’m sure that there are so many Mums out there who have sent their kids off to school with little acts of kinds and love, only to find out that they have backfired in some way. I just hope those kids know that their Mum loves them, probably just wanted them to be warm!!!!
Needless to say, I think I’ll be strongly encouraging Ella to wear tights when she is older…. (love you Mum) xxx
Have you got a childhood memory like mine? Would love to hear from you!