How do you know you've passed from the realm of hottie to the never-ending land of mom jeans?
Lenore Moritz: I truly love being a mom, and there's nothing I cherish more than hearing my kids say "mom." I may not have a smile on my face for my 5:45 AM wake-up "mom" call from my 21-month-old, but I still love to hear that sweet boy in the crib say it. That said, there are times when "mom" is a bad word, when "mom" takes on the connotation of dumpy and frumpy. For example, "mom jeans" or "mom hair."
Here's my new rule: Unless you are my sons, do NOT call me mom (with the one exception being that you are not my son but you've attached the words "world's greatest" just before "mom").
I don't live with lots of rules in my life, but this one is necessary and comes as a direct result of what I'll call the "incident," which happened during my trip to New York a few days ago.
I was in New York to gather cultural finds and see friends. A little context: New York is my former hometown -- I grew up two hours away, visited often as a kid, and lived there for a decade as an adult (until four years ago). Major things took place while I was there, including the best -- meeting my husband. New York is my "soul city," and I always feel like I'm back home when I'm there.
I was traveling alone (my first trip ever without my family), and had put together a great look -- hot over-the-knee boots which I'm mad about, a short knit dress, and leggings. I was feeling of-the-moment but age-appropriate. It was a gorgeous winter day (at 41 degrees, rather balmy compared to the 2 degrees back in Minneapolis).
I was strutting -- yeah, I was -- up Times Square when two words pierced my veil-of-happy. "Hey Mom," the voice said. Wait, what? Never mind, I thought, no way he's talking to me. "Hey Mom," he called out again. Oh no you didn't! Who are you calling "mom" -- apparently you didn't look down and see my sweet footwear!
Before I knew it, he was sticking a homemade CD of his music in my face. "Hey Mom, take my CD." I just kept walking -- it's my New York instinct. As I walked off he said, "Hey, where are you going? Where are you from?" I'm thinking, why do you care -- do you want to ask me if I drive a minivan and wear sweatpants every day? (Incidentally the answers are no, but I would if I had more than TWO kids; and no, because some days I never change out of pajamas.)
I laughed out loud as thoughts raced through my mind:
How did he know I'm a mom?
What was up with that CD, should I have taken it?
Maybe there was an "a" at the end of Mom, maybe he said "Hey Mama" (which is entirely different than "Hey Mom," mama being more a word of "you're looking goooood")
Did he not see my outfit? I don't think this is a "mom" get-up.
I was surprised, but also amused. Of course, I certainly didn't let it knock down how I was feeling about myself -- if all it took was a shout-out in Times Square to change my mood, I'd be one messy lady.
Who knew that "mom" could be such a charged word and range from being the sweetest word in the world to being a name that means you've passed some sort of sexy cool prime ... and you need never outgrow that, you simply need to change the length of your skirt.
|Lenore Moritz is the curator/editor of Mom Culture, a culture fix for your inner grown up. Each Friday, a new artist interview and their art will inspire and energize you. High culture, pop culture and everything in between is covered.|