I have an embarrassing story to tell. It happened years ago but it still cuts deep. I guess that’s why I’ve never forgotten…

When I was eleven years old I went a posh private school with lots of expensive amenities including a huge swimming pool. Twice a week, together with the other girls of my class, I headed to the change room to don my regulation brown and white swimmers and my rubber cap, ready for our regulation exercise in the water.

One day as I lifted my navy blue school tunic over my head, I discovered something kind of embarrassing. Actually, it was awfully embarrassing.  I found myself standing in full view wearing my pyjama pants… my brightly coloured floral baby doll bloomers.

My face went as red as my hair. How could I have forgotten to get dressed properly that morning? Twenty-five girls were standing there in their twenty-five pairs of regulation navy blue underwear. The twenty-sixth girl was wearing her pyjama pants.

Then I heard a snigger, and someone snorted, and then a full belly laugh rolled through the room. “She’s wearing pyjama pants! Who’d come to school in their pyjama pants?” No one except me.

I just wanted to crawl under the bench and never come out. I hurriedly pulled on my swimmers and thrust the offending pants under my pile of clothes, hoping everyone would stop laughing. But they didn’t. Snigger! Snort! Chuckle!

I hated pyjama pants, swimming days, sniggers and snorts, and feeling embarrassed. I hated the fact that twenty-five eleven year old school girls had so much power to hurt.

I guess that’s another reason why I never sent my children to school.

"I've just written a post about pyjama pants," I tell my older girls. "It's a childhood story. It's about how embarrassed I was when I realised I'd forgotten to get dressed properly before going to school."

"That sounds like a Ramona story," says Imogen.

"Yeah, but she chose to wear her pyjamas to school," says Charlotte. "She had these wonderful new pyjamas which she didn't want to take off, so she decided to just put her clothes on over the top of them."

"She got dressed like a fireman," explains Imogen. "You know... they never have time to change from their pyjamas into their underwear when going out on a call."

"And then Ramona got hot and she wished she'd never decided to wear her pyjamas to school," grins Charlotte.

"What if you'd gone to school and discovered you were still wearing your pyjama pants?" I ask.

"I'd be proud of my pyjama pants!" says Charlotte, her eyes flashing with delight.

"Anyway, these days it's fashionable to wear pyjama pants as everyday wear," says Imogen.

"So you wouldn't be embarrassed?"


Perhaps I should have sent my kids to school after all.

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  1. I remember those bloomers! My girls would laugh themselves silly if they saw a photo of those. Still, it was the fashion, then.

    I guess people are more casual, these days, or, maybe, pyjamas are more trendy. We see young girls in their pj's everywhere on Sunday mornings - it's the new Sunday best.

    Children can be such a mix of sensitive and insensitive, can't they? It's sad that this sort of humiliation can having lasting effects.

    God bless, Sue:-)

    1. Vicky,

      It's funny looking back at what we used to wear! I don't think any of us would have worn those bloomers as Sunday best. I haven't actually seen any girls wearing their pjs in the street (though I'm sure it happens). We must live in a fashion backwater!

      Insensitive children? Maybe it's another case of peer pressure. Girls in a pack can be frightening!

      God bless!

  2. O my, how amazing... we both went to school in our pyjama pants! But I didn't have to let the rest of my class know about it... I discovered the "error" (caused by dressing while still asleep, I know) in a restroom stall and no one knew but me. Still, I was mortified, sure that everyone could "tell." Funny how we can carry these things with us for our whole lives. I once remembered a time when I'd been teased mercilessly for something of no consequence (not being good at softball or some such thing), and I realized the teasing was still affecting something in my adult life. I suddenly realized: "my feelings and behavior right now are being dictated by a few long forgotten TWELVE YEAR OLD GIRLS!" That thought stuck with me, and has made a real difference in my life ever since.

    Thanks for another terrific post!

    1. Nancy,

      Thank you so much for sharing your own embarrassing pyjama pants story. You understand perfectly! Funny how these little things affect us so much.

      I suddenly realized: "my feelings and behavior right now are being dictated by a few long forgotten TWELVE YEAR OLD GIRLS!" Yes! Now that I've told everyone this dreadful secret which I've been carrying around inside me for years, I will move on! I will be proud of my pyjama pants. I still don't think I'll wear them in public though!

      What a silly post. Gets even sillier tomorrow...

  3. Oh no. it sounds like a bad dream one might have!
    Definitely the meanness of other children is one of the many reasons my kids don't go to school.
    You're doing so well with your A-Z challenge, well done :)

    1. Kelly,

      A bad dream? Oh, I wished it was. I'd have loved to have woken up to find it was all a nightmare!

      Thank you for encouraging me along. I only have 6 more posts to write. I should be able to do that!

    2. I also did not know if this was real or a dream, Considering your imagination, I tended towards the dream explanation. But if this is a real life experience ... Ouch! My commiseration. I always liked shcool uniforms - which we never had - because it reduced one of the biggest reasons for bullying - but I guess bullies will be bullies.
      If you're looking for a way to make more letter-posts the Danish alphabet ends with these three extra letters Æ Ø Å, or æ ø å if you want lower case :D

    3. Uglemor,

      Lots goes on in my imagination, but this time it was all for real!

      I can see the advantages of uniforms. All the schools I went to had them. As we homeschool I've never had to think about uniforms for my children. Every day is mufti day!

      Uglemor, you have made me smile with your Danish letters. Aren't you fed up with my alphabet posts yet? The only problem is I don't know any words beginning with those letters, unless I make two of them into an ordinary O and A!

  4. I wear my pjs to the grocery store sometimes, so I guess I own the look myself haha.

    Happy A to Z blogging.

    1. S.L. Hennessy,

      I bet your pyjama pants aren't old fashioned bloomers! Actually, I imagine it would be very comfortable wearing pyjamas all day. It does seem rather a pity we have to get dressed properly every morning.

      Thank you for visiting my blog and stopping to say hello!

  5. School is a minefield of embarrassment. Wearing pyjama bottoms is fashionable here to but, as much as I adore my pyjamas, I couldn't go out in public wearing them.

    1. Mama J,

      I am rather relieved my school days are over. These days I really don't care what people think of me, but I still don't think I'm likely to go out in my pjs either... unless I bought some really attractive and trendy ones. I could wear my ugg boots with them and be warm and comfortable. No... my children would probably object!

  6. Guess who else this happened to? Of course, everyone on the playground saw mine because we were playing tag, I fell, and my school uniform flipped up. They were bright pink. (The same style as yours - I guess those baby doll bloomers were popular everywhere.) Trust me, I never forgot to take them off again after that incident :) I still remember how embarrassed I was!

    At my daughter's school the kids have a pajama day on purpose! They got to wear them to school for the whole day!

    How things change. Great story, Sue!

    1. Mary,

      It seems I have highlighted an experience lots of us have had to deal with! Perhaps we're all from the same era, the pj bloomer era! Nowadays, it seems no one would get embarrassed by the such things. Present day pjs are much more attractive than those baby doll things.

      I think a pyjama day at school would be great fun if everyone was participating. Doing silly things together is so different from being the lone offender.

      Thank you for sharing my story!

  7. Sue, my kids are like yours! (Of course they wear pajamas to school on Winter days and so does their teacher.)

    1. Anabelle,

      Pyjamas make the best kind of school uniform! All this talk of pyjamas made me consider not getting dressed today. It's turned cold and I was so warm and snuggly in my pjs, I didn't want to take them off. I think I'm going to have to tear myself away from the computer and go sort out the winter clothes!


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