I don’t care what anyone says, it’s hard work potty training boys. Sit, stand, aim. Boys just seem overwhelmed and uninterested. I tried everything… a sticker box and glossy chart to go with it, m&ms as a reward, and the old tried and true, Cheerios in the toilet.

By the time my first-born was off to preschool, I desperately tried to entice him with a shopping spree for “big boy pants” all his own. In the store, we both in stood amazement staring at the vast selection. Immediately, Kevin fell in love with the Spider-Man four pack. That was easy, I thought. Each of the underwear had a small picture of Spider-Man on the front, a large Spider -Man scene on the back, and all were trimmed in different primary colors. Kevin was so excited! I was excited too, but for the reason of putting the expense of pull-ups behind me. At the time, I was also paying for Pampers for his brother Eric.

After a trial run over the weekend, the novelty of the new “big boy pants” hadn’t worn off. When Monday morning arrived, Kevin took pride in dressing himself for school. I encouraged his new-found independence, giving his snap close jeans and Spider-Man T-shirt a once-over and a quick and prideful expression of approval.

“Kevin, I am so proud of you!” I said with delight.

Kevin beamed a smile back while we were on our way to his preschool. In the car, I explained about wearing “big boy pants”, using the potty (like we had at home), and of course, the importance of washing your hands.

“I’ve got this!” I thought, feeling like the best mom ever.

As soon as we entered the classroom, I discreetly let the preschool teacher know that Kevin had a great weekend potty training and that he was actually wearing underwear. I think I was as proud as Kevin was. Feeling hopeful that I had finally conquered the potty training battle, I left for home to catch up on the laundry and house cleaning.

Hmm. Not a call from the school. Kevin must be doing great. I knew it. One down, one to go and I’d be well on my way to financial freedom.

When I returned to pick up Kevin, the teacher was busy with another parent. I thought, well, no news is good news. We drove home, got out of the car and went inside for lunch and then a well deserved nap.

Kevin was playing in the family room with some toys when I called to him that lunch was ready. It was then that I noticed that his jeans were unsnapped. “Kevin, you didn’t snap your jeans. Come here and mommy will fix it for you,” I said.

Kevin came running over. I pulled his jeans together but was unable to snap them. I tried again. They were too tight or there was just too much material. It was then that I noticed that there was definitely too much material. I could see the bands of color from his big boy pants…red, yellow, blue and green.

“Kevin, how many pairs of big boy pants do you have on?” I asked.

Kevin matter-of-factly replied, “All of them.”

I asked Kevin, “Why did you wear all four of them?”

“I couldn’t decide.”

I pulled at the material bulging out of the fly of his tiny jeans. Sure enough, there were all four pairs of Spider-Man underwear. Looking more closely, I could see the large colorful scene from the back of his underwear. He had them all on backwards.

“Kevin, why did you put all of the underwear on backwards?”

“I wanted to see the big picture, Mom.”

I chuckled, but little did I know that Kevin would grow into a young man who always seeks the big picture in life and in turn never gets hung up on small details.

Maybe, that is a lesson for all of us.







One thought on “The Big Picture

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