Monday, June 27, 2011

Do You Know Who I Am? I'm the Bejeweled, Long-Haired Cheese...the One in the Mini Dress

As of this past Saturday, I am the mother of three teenagers and one "tween." Technically, one of those teenagers is an adult, but that's a term loosely used on any 18-year-old, I don't care how mature or wise he may be.

Three teenagers.


How the hell did this happen? Well, I know how it happened. But I I am 46 years old, clearly old enough to claim these kids as my own. But I don't feel like I should be able to claim them. Just this morning, Tavi was chastising me for buying this very cool, multi-colored peace sign bracelet cuff. It screamed my name as I did my best to walk by and ignore it in the store. But seriously--that bracelet belongs on my arm. And it was under $5, which I interpreted as a sign from God that it should go home with me. Tavia informed me that I should give it to her, because I'm "way too old" to wear it. She did not, however, deny it's cuteness.

I remember my mom telling me that once a woman gets to a certain age (can't remember what that predetermined age was), long hair should be cut and no longer worn with ribbons adorning it. My hair is still long. And I still wear ribbons in it. And flowers. And flowered ribbons. I'm also partial to peace signs and anything reminiscent of the 60s, like go-go boots. I not-so-secretly covet a pair of shiny white go-go boots. And a mini-dress with bell sleeves made of some kind of groovy-patterned fabric. I can't help it. It's just who I am. I don't really care if I'm 60, 70, 80...if I want to tie my hair up with a pink ribbon and sashay around town in go-go boots, I'm damn well going to do it. So get the hell out of my way, people. Or at least stop and give me a ride. On your motorcycle, 'cause that's another thing I'll never get too old for. And the faster, the better.

But I digress. It's just the three kids and me living here now. I am outnumbered 3 to 1. And in any situation involving Tuck or Tavi, they gang up on me and take up each other's cause. Doesn't matter what it is, I am the enemy who must be brought down. Their ability to collaborate and cooperate is impressive; I wish they'd use that skill to do housework or wash the van. Or rub my feet. Something that might benefit me in some way. Alas, their focus is always on "making a point" or "proving" me wrong. Often, it's just on arguing for the sake of arguing.

I remember feeling as if I always had a point to make. That lasted until I was about 20. Then I gradually stopped caring if people agreed with me. In fact, if too many people agreed with my point of view, I thought I must be wrong. Because the cheese stands alone, and I liked being the cheese.

Now, in my late 40s, I still don't feel the need to get people to agree with me. Add to that a distinct lack of needing approval for whatever I might do or say, think or feel, and I've come to a satisfyingly liberating stage of my life. Is this what most women in their 40s feel like? I would truly like to hear from any of you, because in my 20s, I thought getting older would be awful. But now that I AM older, I actually prefer it.

The writer in me appreciates the irony in that concept. The mom in me relishes the idea that my kids feel sorry for me because I'm OLD. The woman in me just wants those freakin' go-go boots.

1 comment:

Mary A. Shafer said...

This is so you. :)