It wasn't until the other night that I faced a somewhat harsh reality.
I'm no longer cool.
Okay, well, whether or not I was ever cool to begin with is up for debate.
Maybe I should say that I no longer run the risk of being cool.
I went out with my twenty one year old sister the other night to run some errands while Hubs watched the kiddos and put them to bed.
Yes. He is amazing. and no, you can't have him.
I had no desire to rush. I wanted to stroll the quiet aisles of the stores at 8 o'clock at night and pick up things I'd probably never buy and think about where I would put it in my house if I could ever find a practical use for them. I'd admire the beauty of an oversized vase with paint drips artistically dribbled down the sides in shades of blue and green and let my mind wander to my "never-ever" beach house that I would put it in. The one that husband would never go for because the insurance would be too high. Then I'd remember how my three year old would likely squeeze an entire tube of toothpaste into the completely unnecessary piece of art and I'd probably change my decor anyway and it would eventually not match anything I had and would ultimately be a huge waste because, really, "what would I put in it, anyway?".
I'd then put it down and move on.
I'd give up on the home decorating section and head over towards the clothing department where I'd come across a really cute tank top. I'd pull it off the rack, hold it out in front of me, admire it's crisp white color and classic lines.
"That's something Jennifer Aniston would wear", I'd tell myself.
"I wish I could dress like her... even on her worst days she looks amazing... like a real woman... she dresses herself elegantly. Her attire is timeless. Sort of Audrey Hepburn-like."
"I should really try to dress more like that."
"Maybe after I stop having babies and get my figure back."
"I wonder if my figure ever will come back? If it does, I'm buying a whole new wardrobe that won't include sweats. I'm gonna ditch all my practical, full-coverage underwear and buy something that's completely uncomfortable but sexy just because I can."
And with that the reality of my not-so-jen-like, post-baby-arms would hit me and not only was the shirt not going to hide all that I deem necessary to hide, there's no chance that a white shirt would stay white on my body. It would be mere minutes before oatmeal, smoothy, spittup, boogers, and baking ingredients would speckle a nice shirt like in our house. And, quite frankly, I can't think of a single pair of jeans I could wear a shirt like that with because my pre-preggo-pants are all still too tight and my very practical sneakers with my custom orthodics aren't dressy enough. I could wear my leather flip flops but I can only wear those somewhere that I don't have to walk too much because my "bad knee" get sore if I overdo it.
"I'll just stick with the same sweat pants that I have in five different colors. Classy? Not really. But they're from GAP. That counts, right?"
Oh forget it!
So after all the lazy wandering, picking things up, talking about how "cute and totally impractical" so much of the stuff I saw is, I asked my sister if she wanted to go get a drink with me at the restaurant down the street. I'm thinking, I rarely get out, I'll buy her a drink, she helps me so much with the kids, it'll be nice to catch up and talk "girl" for a change.
I make my proposal.
I quickly find out that my sister has grown up and no longer thinks places like Red Robin are fun.
I guess she's a little too old for the balloons they hand out.
When on earth did she grow up?!
I guess I should have realized how old she has become when I offered to take her out for a "drink".
Nope, Red Robin is out and to top it off, she's already made plans with another, much younger than me, friend who is working the bar at a locally owned restaurant and at nine o'clock, when I'm ready to sit down for a night-cap, she's ready to start her night.
I dropped her off at her car and we parted ways a little before nine.
I picked up the phone and called the only person my age that I knew was still up. Hubs.
"You want me to grab some coffee for us on my way home? I can get it right after I run to the grocery store and pick up a few things."
Oh yeah. That's just what a woman my age, married, with three small kids, is expected to do out on her night of freedom. And you know what's worse, I didn't mind.
Something about a nearly empty grocery store late at night relaxes me.
I got what I needed, decided that it was actually too late for coffee as I packed my bags into the mini-van.
I'm pretty sure my sister was on her way to meet a friend who does not drive a mini van.
As I was getting ready to back out of the parking spot to head home to be with my man at 9:30 p.m... I noticed a woman getting out of the car next to me and saw two toddler carseats in the back. I stopped and watched through my rearview mirror as she walked behind my van to head into the store. From what I could see, she was trendily dressed. Nice top, cute shorts, she looked good.
I'm not that mom.
I don't look put together anymore.
I look tired.
I AM tired!
I turned to see her crossing the parking lot and entering the grocery store and what's this?!...
With all that cuteness, put-together-ness, hair-in-its-place-ness, I noticed the sneakers on her feet that didn't match her outfit at all!
But I understood.
I understood that, just like my footwear of choice these days, they were practical.
"It feels so good to not be alone in my uncoolness", I thought.
"I bet she wears orthodics."