I remember as a child loving to visit my friends' houses and trying on each other's clothes. It was dress-up fun, a special event when we got to pretend that we were fabulous and rich. I suddenly had a wardrobe twice the size of my own filled with new and sensational items my own mom wouldn't buy for me! The frilly skirts and cute tops transported me to another life, one much more exciting than my own. The best still was when we had sleepovers and the dress-up time lingered late into the night. Sleeping in someone else's home was a treat, and we loved the idea of being liberated and independent, far away from our own homes and our mundane routines. Getting to be someone else was such an adventure.
Now I can't help but wonder how many of the children we see at Pajama Program wish for a mundane routine in a home and a bed of their own. They don't long to be someone else for adventure, they don't want to be free and independent, they just want someone and something to count on for the monotonous comfort and security day in and day out.
Seven-year-old Sherrie has been transferred between temporary homes several times and we sent pajamas to her current residence for her to wear and take if she moves again. A few days ago we received a letter from her: "I like pajamas because when you go to some one's house you don't have to wear their clothes."
What a difference a circumstance makes. I couldn't wait to wear clothes that weren't mine and sleep in someone's bed, and here I was reading a child's note that clearly told me she didn't want to wear someone else's clothes. It wasn't fun at all. She wants her own. For a child like Sherrie, It's more exciting to sleep in a bed that's hers.