Do I Look Like a Mom in This Dress?
I remember before I had kids, I would see women 10 years after high school or college. I used to wonder what happened to them. They looked…different. It was as if their hair wasn’t kept up and they put on weight. They looked tired.
How naive. I get it now. Part of it is age. But after you have kids a lot of things change. We look like (gasp!) moms.
And that’s why when I go shopping or go to the salon, I feel more polished. The problem is now it all has to be mapped out. What’s the budget? What style and color do I want? What stores do I want to go to and when do they open? Add kids to that map, and it’s a three-ring circus. I am certain of this as I have tried.
We have a wedding to go to next weekend, so I stopped at the area’s largest shoe warehouse to find shoes. Seriously, they gotta have 3,000 pair of shoes. My thought has been if you go there and can’t find shoes you either A really didn’t look, or B your feet are a size 15. In my case, it was because I had my kids with me. Their behavior was fine, but they were running up to me with every shoe they thought I would like. Again, the store has about 3,000 pairs.
My kids meant well, and they tried to be helpful. “Mom, try this.” Stiletto? So not gonna happen.
“Can you try this one?” they would ask excitedly.
“No. That’s a size 6. Mommy is a 10.” Mysteriously since childbirth, my left foot is an 11. For me shoe shopping is like finding a two-piece bathing suit. The same size rarely fits both parts.
“No. Not that one either. It is the wrong color.”
I knew finding a dress was prove to be even worse, so I decided to spare the boys and go it alone. My style has become predictable, and I was trying to try something different. I kept second-guessing myself and thinking, Do I look like a mom in this?
The dressing room was filled with girls half my age. It was such a change from hanging with the boys. Some of the girls were chatting and complimenting each other. They were discussing their weekend plans. Then one of them said, “No way! This looked much different on the hanger. It doesn’t look good on me. It’s more for like an older Cougar type.” Oooh. Cougarwear? I was tempted to ask her to bring down my way.
After I got home with a couple dresses I bought, I decided to put on a mini fashion show for the family. I wasn’t thinking my husband and boys were going to jump for joy, but I was hoping to get a positive response. Hoping was a mistake.
My youngest pointed to my stomach area and noted, “It looks like there is a baby in there.”
“Yeah I can see some of your tummy, Mom.”
Really? Maybe that would have been a good time to explain to them that having two kids back-to- back didn’t give Mommy a flat stomach. And breastfeeding for what seemed like two years straight didn’t provide Mommy with perkier boobs. And the varicose veins certainly didn’t get better with motherhood.
I didn’t say those things because that would make me sound bitter. I’m not bitter. Just frustrated. It was tempting to throw on some flip-flops and a cover up and call it an outfit.
Do I look like a mom? What does a mom look like? Do I look a bit different than before I had kids? A bit. But I am going to wear a dress even if I have to wear Spanx. And a special bra. And possibly some industrial style hosiery. I am wearing a dress!