The Tovsky Tribe

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Friday, February 26, 2010

To The Shoes!

He's passionate.  He loves deeply and loyally.  He is three!

Ryder has a way of falling in love.  He has fallen in love with his guitar, Neil Young, his "Benny" Pants, Spiderman, his Victorino t-shirt, and his blue and green striped sneakers.  He loves, obsesses over, each of these things deeply, as if they are the very best things in this whole entire world, with wide eyes and huge smiles.  He does not fall out of love with one as a new obsession enters his world, he just adds it to the list.

This post here is dedicated to his shoes!

In September of 2008 I bought the boys new sneakers.  They were good sneakers, suitable for running, jumping, climbing, etc. but they were also, what I would consider, their dress shoes.  Their school shoes.  They were the shoes they would wear most of the time, or so I thought, and therefore I felt a second pair of cheap, crappy sneaks for them to run through puddles with and to wear to the playground was absolutely necessary.
I found two pair that suited my style, edgy and different, yet affordable.  In fact, they were $6 each.  A red, white and blue pair from the GAP and a green and blue pair from OLD NAVY.  I brought them home to show the boys and within seconds Ryder claimed his pair and he never took them off.  Occasionally, he'd wear the brown and black Skechers I had picked out for him, and of course in the Summer he barely wore shoes at all, but literally for the last 17 months I had a hard time begging the shoes off of his feet.  17 months.  The shoes are older than Turner.

I figured they were too small, but when I asked Ryder he said they fit him fine and that he liked them.  "They are so comfortable," he would add.  It's important to note here that he also wore them on the wrong feet.  Always.  He knew they were wrong, he knows his left from  his right and is fully capable of dressing himself.  I would tell him, Todd would tell him, Chase would tell him.   But, he did not care.  "I like them that way," he would say, sternly reminding us he has an opinion and he is flexing it.  Sometimes I would try to change them and he would kick his feet just enough to get me off of his shoes.  His green shoes!!
So, he wore them, left on right, right on left, for months.  And months.  And months.
In September of 2009 I bought the boys new shoes, again, before school started.  Ryder's are still new.  Worn only several times in the last 6 months because usually he had to wear his "green shoes."

About six months ago the boys discovered the movie "The Sandlot" which opened their hearts and mind to the great sport of baseball. The main character in the movie, Benny, apparently wears shoes that remind Ryder of his black Converse high tops.   Converse are adorable, and I love them on the boys, but they are near impossible to put on which meant that I never planned on owning a pair after the first pair I had bought.  But, they are now Ryder's Benny shoes (to go along with the Benny jeans which I still have no idea why they were coined that.)  But, Ryder wanted to wear his Benny shoes a little more often which gave me an opportunity  I could not pass up.  I threw away his green shoes. 
Everyone told me just to do it then tell Ryder we could not find them when he asked for them.  But, jewish guilt #999 set in so I told Ryder all about it.

"Ry, buddy, it's time to throw away your shoes.  They don't fit.  I want you to say goodbye!"  This wasn't out of nowhere I had warned him for months that, eventually, I was going to get rid of the shoes.   He looked at me.  He looked at the shoes.  Looked at me again, "OK."  He looked at the shoes,  "Bye, green shoes," then back at me, "Can I still wear my Benny shoes?"
It was that easy, it happened that simply.  Maybe he does not love as deeply as I thought?  Maybe the timing was just right.  Amazingly, the Converse are not too hard to put on now that he is older and he can even do it himself.  And, more amazingly, he chooses to wear them on the correct feet.

I looked at the shoes before I threw them out to the curb. I laughed.  I like old, worn in things too. I almost could not blame the little dude.  The soles were worn flat, the once navy blue was now a faded denim, the size, I should not admit, was a size and a half too small, and from looking at them it was hard to tell which shoe belonged on what foot because it was so worn in to the opposite foot.  I wanted to save them as a memento, but then he would have worn them.  Instead, I took a few pictures and posted them here.  Ryder will look back at these pictures and laugh, maybe.   Or cry.  Or both.


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