“I used to be cool.”
Occasionally I see this sticker on a van when I’m dropping off my kids at school, and my initial thought is, “Shoooooooot, I still am b*tches!”
Then I really let that statement sink in and realize that if I were 12 or 13, would I really think that a 45-year-old mom was cool? When I was 15, I thought 30-year-olds were basically ancient mummies.
Then I really unpack this statement and realize what I think we all do as we get older and have kids: We sound exactly like our parents. Definitely not cool status! Oh my, how did I get here?!
For example: Why is this light on in this room and nobody in it? Who left the refrigerator door open and why? Why can’t you close your dresser drawer when you are done picking out your clothes? And the all-time favorite: “WE HAVE FOOD AT HOME.”
No lie, my dad tied up our hairbrush as kids because he could never find one to use in our house — secured to the wall with a rope because he was sick of living in a house of girls where the hairbrushes always walked off and he could never find one. I look back now and crack up at this, but at the time, my dad was not finding any humor in it. I’ve also thought about doing the same thing as my long-haired beach boys accuse ME of losing THEIR brush! The nerve!!!
So, as we grow and evolve and the seasons of our lives change, obviously so does our definition of “being cool.”
Now what I find to be cool is just being yourself. Not being a jerk in life, spending time with your family, and doing things you love to do that make you happy. You reach a point in life where you say, “Who cares what people think?” It’s a beautiful thing when you really reach that point in life because you are comfortable with who you are. The lesson we all wish we could rewind time and share with our 16-year-old selves, right?
Raising productive, respectful, kind kids is cool, too. Getting up every day to work hard for your family so you can play hard is also cool. Being a good example to your kids and teaching young boys how to be men and respectful to young ladies.
Do my kids think I’m cool? I think they think I do certain things that are “cool” right now. I like to skate with them, laugh at their silly boy jokes, and take them to do boy things they like to do, but in reality, I like to do a lot of those things anyway, so it comes easy. Right now they enjoy being around me, but they’ve definitely called me “cringe” about certain things, so I think that tide will turn soon. But in general, I think they will think I’m “cool” — for an old lady, a.k.a. an ancient mummy!
What will be really cool though is when my kids do grow into adults, and they feel like they can talk to me openly, confide in me, and come to me when they need help or advice. That they look back at their childhoods and say, “My mom let me be myself, and I trusted her and she tried to give me every opportunity to be successful and guided me down a productive path.” That will be really cool. That is my goal and the end game.
So, as a 45-year-old tired mom, I will end on this note, because I don’t know that I’ve ever used the word “cool” as much as I have just now. My take on that sticker on the van is all about acceptance. We used to be young and carefree (“cool”), but here we are in this stage of life lucky enough to be moms (or dads) and dropping our kids off at school. It’s a wonderful thing. Embrace it. Enjoy it.
Now, it’s almost my bedtime, and if you text me after 9 p.m. I will respond the next day at 5 a.m., but each night as I slowly fall asleep, I whisper to myself, “I’m still cool b*tches!”
Ha! Not really. Who cares. Just be YOU! Do what you love, love what you do, and love who you do it with. That’s way cooler. These youngin’s today will figure that out soon enough.