I have lots of boots. It’s shameful. No one needs that many pairs. They’re a guilty pleasure. A boot habit can get expensive, so I have a little agreement with myself. I’m only allowed to buy one new pair a year. I carefully curate my collection. You need just the right boot for every outfit and situation. I have flat boots, heeled boots, casual boots, dressy boots and rugged boots.
I mulled over my latest purchase last fall and decided to add a pair of cowboy boots to my collection. No, I don’t own a horse. I haven’t been on a horse since the Mackinac Island incident of 1998 when I ended up so saddle sore I couldn’t walk for a week. I don’t square dance or even listen to country music. But what gallery of boots would be complete without such a classic?
I wanted real cowboy boots. Since I couldn’t go to Texas, I went to the next best place, the local western store. There were so many, many cowboy boots. Rows and rows of them standing tall and smelling sweetly of brand new leather. There were fancy boots embroidered with colorful flowers. Boots with lazer-cut details and two-toned leather. Sparkly pink boots for Taylor Swift wanna-bes. Distressed boots that looked strong and tough. I picked out a traditional style that goes with anything and never goes out of fashion.
I brought my new boots home and wore them around the house, because it’s fun to wear your new boots. Wade saw them first.
“Are those cowboy boots?” he asked with amazement in his voice.
“They’re real cowboy boots?”
“Your cowboy boots?”
“That’s so awesome!” He paused then got a puzzled look on his face. “Mom? Are you a cowgirl like Jessie on Toy Story?”
“OK. Hey! I have cowboy boots too. You’re just like me!”
When I put my cowboy boots on Wade puts his on too. Then we go around town together in our cowboy boots like Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson.
David discovered my new footwear when he can home from school.
“Cowboy boots? Cool,” he said admiringly. Whenever I wear them he always comments, “I can’t believe you have cowboy boots.”
It’s not often either one of my boys notices what I’m wearing. They don’t care if I have a new dress and anything pink and sparkly is gross. But I put on a pair of cowboy boots, and they take notice. I’m one hip mama now. Not because the boots are stylish, but because they’re cowboy boots. What boy doesn’t like cowboys? Maybe they imagine their mother living a secret life roping cattle and rounding up outlaws.
David, Wade and I won’t be going to any tea parties together. We won’t ever pick out prom dresses or decide how to wear their hair on their wedding day. But we’ll always have our cowboys boots. Maybe I’ll wear them with my mother-of-the-groom dress.
What unique ways have you found common ground with your kids?