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The sight of new underwear still in its plastic was enough to perk my son up off the floor of the mall.

“For me?” he asked.  He hugged the boxer briefs to his chest and glowed like I’d bought him a new bike.

In seconds the packaging was in a pile, a pair of undies with green lizards was bouncing under my nose, and my son was pleading, “I just want to wear them now.”


It was fifteen minutes before we found my husband in another store exiting a dressing room.

Only when he reentered, so did our son carrying lizard underwear.

There was a moment of calm before my boy waltzed from the dressing room, a sideways smile on his face.  He knew and I knew, and he knew that I knew that his behind was wearing fresh cloth.

Which, I realized, was the way it was supposed to be.

Because it was how love spoke.  Right then.  To my boy.


Sometimes it’s just another’s arm around our shoulder.  Sometimes just a door held an extra second or a homemade card with real handwriting.

Sometimes, though, we just need a new pair of underwear.

Straight from the plastic.

With lizards on ’em.


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