I was dropping off my daughter at school this morning when another mother heard me wish her a good day. She looked at me, did a double take, and asked, “You’re Liliana’s mother?” I nodded.
I literally counted to 20 in my head as she looked me over from head to toe. My mind started racing, wondering what exactly was wrong. I don’t work on Fridays, so I was wearing my ‘mom wear’–usually jeans or yoga pants, TOMS, some sort of t-shirt, and a hoodie or sweater. Today it was jeans, red TOMS, a Kurt Vonnegut shirt, and a pink hoodie. I never fix my hair, even for work, but sloppy chignons or ponytails are pretty standard for moms. I even had on a little make up.
“Huh,” she finally said. “You’re very stylish for one of those kinds of people.”
For those of you who know me, you can probably picture that look I get when I’m confused, where I cock my head like a dog.
“What kind of people?” Teachers? Redheads?
“Well, you always do the whole wheat bread and snacks, like at the Christmas Party, and you did those plantable Valentines–one of those kind of people.”
Then she was gone, leaving me to ponder what she considers ‘those kind of people.’ And how is it they lack style? And what did she mean, qualifying my stylishness?
As I sat in my car, getting ready to exit the parking lot, I was trapped in a glass and metal case of confusion. Is there something wrong with whole wheat bread for PB&J? Was I wrong to send Valentines that can be planted to grow wildflowers instead of candy and paper cards that will end up in a landfill? Am I that poorly dressed? And we already know the drama of the Gingerbread men (and women–I included girls not to be biased).
Then I thought about this woman and her apparently small world of experience where just because I give thought to what I feed my child and how my actions impact the future, not just the now, I should be wearing a potato sack and not know what mascara is for. And then rolled my eyes, shook my head, and drove my son in his cloth diapers and Amber teething beads home to do yoga to the sounds of Guns N Roses.
She can suck it.