A little story about gloves


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This photo is from several years ago when The Gap sent us a pair of mittens for the same hand. I tried for weeks to get them on Sam’s hands until I realized the error. We’ve had a lot of problems with hand-coverings over the years.

On Tuesday, the first really chilly day, I put a pair of nice, new gloves on Sam’s hands.*


I bent down to look Sam in the eyes, so he would know I was serious.

“Sam,” I said, “Do not lose these gloves.”

He looked sweetly back into my Stern Mom Face™ and said, “I won’t. I promise.”

Reader, I don’t need to tell you what happened next.**

That night, after work (me) and school and aftercare (Sam), I helped him unpack his backpack. The gloves were not there.

“Sam? What happened to your gloves?”

And he burst into tears.

He had, of course, lost them. Somewhere in the school, despite me being careful to Sharpie his name in the tag (#stonecoldmomming).

This is honestly is nothing in the grand scheme of things. He lost his gloves, like kids do.

But for some reason, I will not let this go.

Every day since then I’ve said something snarky on the way to school like, “Too bad you don’t have your gloves!” Or, “You know, if you didn’t lose your gloves, your hands wouldn’t be cold right now!”

Every day he’s looked for his gloves in the lost and found and they are not there. Which he tells me about, dejectedly. And I say something ungracious like, “Well, if you just put them in your backpack directly after taking them off, you wouldn’t still be looking for them.”

I also refuse to get new gloves for him. And since his father doesn’t seem to realize our beautiful, lovely son doesn’t currently have gloves, I have to be the one to get more, AND I DON’T WANT TO. 

This, from a person (that would be me) who walked around trick or treating with only one glove on her hand because I had lost the other one.

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone and all that.

I’m trying to figure out why I so quickly bend if he loses a beloved LEGO figure — I whip my phone out and order another from Amazon lickety-split, because he’s just so devastated and I can’t handle his tears — but will not do the same with a pair of stupid Costco gloves.***

I guess it comes down to practicality. I am trying to teach him that he has to have gloves so his hands don’t get cold; that he has to look after the boring things. Gloves aren’t exciting but just because something isn’t exciting doesn’t mean they don’t need looking after.

Is he learning this Important Life Lesson™  from me being somewhat of an asshole about the whole thing? Probably not! But I don’t know what else to do. I can admonish him and then quickly get him new gloves. Or I can have him go a week or two without them on his hands, mentioning it everyday, then get him new gloves, so maybe the next time he’ll realize they are somewhat important, simply to bypass me being such a drama queen about it.

I’m going with the latter here. Wish me luck.


*Why am I still putting gloves on my 6-year-old’s hands when he can do it himself? I do not know. Habit?

**But I will. Because that is what I do. I tell you about things that happen in my family in a public place so that my children are armed with ammunition in family group therapy in 15 years.

***Reader, I have even threatened that he has to use his Tooth Fairy money for a new pair. I rave no idea why I’m being such a jerk about this other than to say it’s really stuck in my craw. I think if he could have gone at least a week without losing them, I would be much more even-keeled about the entire thing. But the first day? It’s crazyyyyy-making.


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