My youngest daughter was never a huge shopper. When she was an early teenager at the mall, she took forever to pick out an outfit. It was a point of exhaustion – she circled back to each store three times before a decision was made. As she got older and had money of her own, what she did spend was minimal and thoughful. It became a point of pride for me – she knew the value of a dollar and didn’t create impulsive looks.
Nowadays she seems even more frivolous and thoughtful of her image. She buys an item and once it’s home, she admits to herself that she doesn’t need it. Away at college, she orders something on-line from time-to-time. When she comes home, she wants to return the item.
That’s where I come in.
She has me do her bidding:
- I remember one of the first times we made a return at the mall. I was glad she wanted to spend time with me.
- The second time, it felt great to be a Mom taking care of her baby girl.
- The third time, I worried that she was shy or perhaps I was enabling her?
If she was the driver, in another store or sick at home – I was her front man. I did not mind going to a trendy store counter stating, ‘it is too small’.
After another year of this behavior, I’m smarter.
I’ve also become
leary – skeptical – suspicious
Although I don’t know why – she has the receipts. Well, if she doesn’t, she has the tags. The stores have policies and procedures for returns.
Last weekend her grandmother and I picked her up before Easter. She asked if we could go to the Harley shop to return a shirt before we got on the highway. She drove us to the city dealership but wanted to stay in the car and visit with Grammie. She handed me a bag.
It didn’t seem like a manipulation.
She and her Dad had been to the Harley Davidson shop the prior weekend to use her Christmas gift card. I was happy to give my daughter and Grammie some 1×1 time. I held my own walking into the bike shop. I felt confident in my jeans and about my transaction.
I was greeted at the door and brought over to ‘the ladies’ at the clothing counter. I told them I wanted to exchange the small shirt in my bag for a medium. I didn’t think it was a problem. It was a Harley shirt – from their dealership.
The one time I didn’t have a receipt or a tag, I was questioned – twice. The manager was summoned. I assured her I just wanted to complete an exchange. She acknowledged me but continued to key the numbers on the inside label.
I started to feel like it was a setup.
The feeling was confirmed when the woman with the tight black T-shirt (well – the one with the manager tag on her full bossom) turned back toward me. She told me the shirt style I had was only sold eight months ago. Their return policy was thirty days.
I felt like I deserved thirty days. I won’t be making any more returns. I also don’t think I’ll return to that Harley dealership. My daughter didn’t have much to say for herself. So, I spoke instead – something about exhaustion and not being proud.