At the Mall with a Teenage Boy

I grew up in a house of girls, so a trip to the mall to buy clothes was a celebrated event. We went before school started and again in late spring. After shopping, we went out to lunch. When we got old enough to spend money at Christmas, our mom took us shopping and to lunch again. Just the sisters. With mom. With our friends. They were fun times.

Clothes-shopping with my teenage son is very different.

Why are you making me do this?” he whispers as we pass through the women’s section on our way to the boys’ at Nordstrom, because he has grown out of everything.

“Do not stop. No looking. No stopping,” he instructs between gritted teeth and a look of panic.

He spends forever in the dressing room with me sitting on the high-backed chair in the hall. He drops half the clothes as he pulls them off the hanger then grumbles like an old man as he picks a shirt, a pair of shorts off the floor.

Again. “Why are you making me do this?”

“If you think something looks good, show me,” I say cheerfully.

Silence.

“Do you have anything on yet?”

Silence.

“Don’t forget to show me.”

When we are finally paying for two shorts and three shirts, he perks up. “Do you know what I like to do at the mall?”

Next thing I know, he’s dragging me into the Apple Store. “Mom, this is the 6S Gold.”

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