When I was little, I won a lot of costume contests. But one contest in particular stands out to me because I didn’t win. I came in second and the winner was dressed as a maid. At first I was upset because my mom and I had worked really hard on my black and white jester costume. But then I talked to the maid and found out “she” was a boy. Mind. Blown.
I absolutely loved it. He was dressed as a girl, dressed as a maid! Double costume! I didn’t question it or think it meant anything weird.
Fast forward to now, when celebrities are getting a lot of attention (and a lot of criticism) for letting their boys dress like girls. First Liev Schreiber letting his son dress as Harley Quinn at San Diego Comic Con, and then today on Yahoo News, another celeb letting their son wear a dress to the opera. My reaction – they’re kids, kids like to play dress-up, so what? But the comments were just awful. So bad I thought some of them must be jokes but they weren’t. Apparently, a lot of people firmly believe that men literally must wear the pants and women wear the dresses, and that anything else is a mental illness.
I’ve found there is a lot of acceptance in the costuming and cosplay community for wearing whatever you want. I dress as traditionally “boy” characters all the time. I like to put my own girly spin on them, but still, I’m an over 40 mom dressed as a boy elf and nobody bats an eye.
My only criticism was about the Harley costume- I wouldn’t let an 8-year-old girl wear tiny sparkly shorts and ripped fishnets, so I definitely wouldn’t let my son wear it. But if he wanted to throw on an Elsa dress and dance around the house? No problem. My mom let me wear a boy’s basketball uniform constantly when I was 2 because that’s what I liked (when I wasn’t prancing around in superhero Underroos) and I turned out fine.
And I’m sure these kids will be fine too. However they turn out, they are fine. They are kids and they will change, and they will try things and they will play dress-up. I just find it funny that women once had to fight to wear pants, and now the men have to fight to be accepted in dresses.
I think I get a gold star patience award for having a 20 min discussion about why it isn’t cool to poop your pants and then hang out in it. It’s not cool to be stinky. It’s not good for your butt. Do you want to have an ouchy bottom? And so on.
Why is this even a thing? While I’m doing it there’s a little voice in the back of my head going WTF kid why don’t you want this diaper changed ASAP? Why does a tiny human need to be cojoled out of his poopy drawers? I finally broke down and bribed him with M&Ms. A cooperative diaper change is a much happier experience for us all.
I’ve heard it’s more of a boy thing. My mom doesn’t have any stories like this about me. In fact, in her stories I pop out already talking, potty trained and refuse to even bother with diapers. Have I mentioned I’m over 40 and my mom’s had a lot of time to forget? I suspect there’s some holes in her story.
I also suspect there are a lot of future conversations with the toddler where I’m going to find myself going WTF am I talking about. I can only imagine what lies in store for me in the future…
“Why you can’t jump off the roof into the pool and other tragedies waiting to happen”
“The reason you have to wear clothes, and yes that includes pants”
“Ice cream is not suitable for dinner even though dad thinks it is”
What conversations have you had that go on the ridiculous list?
My 2-year-old is going through some intense development right now, and the resulting tantrums are quite impressive. I am lucky they are short-lived because the decibel level of the screams could possibly cause some eardrum issues. If I have any future hearing loss, I’ll be telling my son he did this to me as a toddler. I’ve read a lot about it being the result of them not being able to communicate, and then the frustration manifests itself as a screaming demon. The articles didn’t actually say “screaming demon,” but I know what they were getting at. So I’m going to unveil the mystery behind what really causes tantrums:
You gave them the cookie they asked for. It was the wrong cookie.
You gave them the right cookie, but you put it in the wrong spot. Cookie is now on the floor.
You picked the cookie up off the floor. No!! They were going to eat that.
We’re done with cookies and now want cars. You can’t find the right car
You found the right car, but put it on the table and he wanted it on the floor.
Do you see a pattern here? It’s obviously us. We’re doing it all wrong. Our mind reading skills are just not sharp enough. Some days we get it. And some days, you just have to hand them the whole darn bag of cookies and walk away.
I’d like to welcome the first GeekMamas guest blogger, Kiersto Killher, who talks about her experience having two babies one after the other and the convention withdrawals that followed. You can find Kiersto on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/KierstoKillher
The two years that changed my life. Two years without a single convention, but back-to-back babies!
I was heavy into costume creation and conventions since high school, which was well over ten years ago. Now that I have made myself feel incredibly old, let’s talk about cutting conventions cold turkey for a little over two years and the great sense of triumph that comes with returning to the scene.
After getting a lot of adult goals out of the way, degrees, marriage, career-choice, and a house, my husband and I started to plan a family. He and I wanted April babies, due to research suggesting children born in the first five months of the year had a greater chance of success in several fields, including sports (I, being a November baby, refuted this, but in the face of empirical evidence, yielded) and we agreed back-to-back, so we could get out of the diaper phase sooner, rather than later. As planned, we had Tiberius in early April, and his sister, Zelda, followed the next year in late April. We missed the next window, unfortunately, to do it one more time, so we took that as a sign and were happy with the two crazy babies we already had.
Now, I you cannot tell how nerdy we are as parents by the names, you’ve already missed the whole idea. The nursery was themed in “Nightmare Before Christmas,” they had Star Trek toys (plushes), and what TV we watched with them was normally Studio Ghibli, DC, Marvel, Trek, Star Wars, and so on. We had fun with all the clothes, Star Fleet onesies, Batman outfits, and my favorite t-shirt which is Ninja Turtles.
As a one and two year old, I know they do not understand much right now. Tiber is just started to talk, he’s a little slower at it due to the fact we have a Japanese Au Pair, who we have teaching him a second language, however he will ask “what’s that” and point. So, I talk about Anakin Skywalker and how it almost ruined Darth Vader by him being whiny, because no one likes whiners (lesson inserted here, especially for those planning future scripts for Kylo Ren). I talk to them about how he and Zac (Zelda’s nickname) cannot be Batman because I do not want to die. Too soon?
It’s sharing this wonderful world of fandom with someone new who hangs on every word you say, until someone turns a show about trains on, in which case I’m chopped liver.
I went from all the time in the world it seems, to constant child care plus a career. That meant something had to drop and that was my creation time. Now that they are a bit more independent, aka walking and partaking in self play, I have some time back. Most costuming is now done after bed time. 8pm to 10pm. This is when I put together our Megacon costumes, which is another article.
The toughest part was what felt like isolation, or house arrest which turned into a type of Stockholm syndrome so when I could get out I constantly felt guilty about not being around the babies. I would have been lost without my ladies group online, my husband, and especially my best friend.
It’s been crazy, sleepless, funny, lovely, gross, depressing, exciting, and all the other emotions one can go through. I would not trade it now for the world. I am excited to continue this journey with my little nerdlets.
I am a safety engineer for an entertainment company, doing fun stuff like stunts, lasers and special effects. I am a mother of two little beasties, Tiberius and Zelda. I own and operate a small ranch in Groveland, called Cottonmouth Ranch. I am a costumer (I try to stay away from the Cosplay title because of the creating element); I create and wear costumes to conventions, since 2003. I also am pursing my Ph.D. in Human Factors. If you have not noticed I am a master at time management.
I have a lot of fandoms. Just to name a few I love Star Trek, Star Wars, most Sci fi/ Fantasy. I love comics, DC, Marvel, Vertigo you name it. My favorite character to dress up as is Harley Quinn, in all her renditions. I love horror movies, especial old school B movies, anything I can play rift tracks to. I also love most action and comedies. Just not rom coms, please. I love playing tabletop games with friends, Magic when I can. I love a lot of different video games; mainly console, although I grew up on a computer based MMO called Everquest. I read a lot of zombie, apocalyptic books. J.L.Bourne is my current favorite author. Although I do have other authors I have enjoyed over the years: Tolken, J.K Rowling, Isaac Asimov, Douglas Adams, Roald Dahl, Gregory Maguire, and G.R.R.Martin to list a few off the top of my head. I love discussing any of the above and new recommendations are always welcome.