On a recent outing to the zoo with my two littlest boys, I came to a realization. Actually a couple of realizations.
Because Jackety Jackerbottoms was not with us, our outing did not require my laser-like attention focused on one strapping redhead. We meandered. We dawdled. We lazily ate lunch in the shadow of the whirling carousel. I people-watched.
When I’m in a public place with Jack, I notice people only when they are in my way of a quick exit. Jack is my sole charge, my raison d’être. I have eyes for no one else.
This time though, I noticed things.
Realization Number One:
I noticed that I’m older than most of the zoo moms nowadays. And yet I remember slapping on a sun hat and strolling my one little boy around the zoo every Wednesday, a dozen years ago.
I looked at those beautiful young moms. They all looked amazing. Their ombré hair was curled to resemble a natural wave. Their designer diaper bags were slung on their new, top-rated strollers. Their outfits were on trend and effortlessly adorable. They were just so pretty!
Note: Except in the case of those who were wearing patterned leggings as pants. It’s an unfortunate trend that leaves little about the wearer’s crotch to the imagination. And because Buzzfeed is discussing it, it clearly is a problem that reaches beyond my town’s zoo.
I sure liked their Tom’s though. Those shoes are comfy, peeps. Also, they’re just cute. This old mom digs the ubiquitous Tom’s trend.
And so, in my people-watching and my lazy-lunch-eating trance, I came to…
Realization Number Two:
I don’t care about that stuff anymore.
I used to. I once cared about strollers and diaper bags and outfits (mine and my children’s).
Now I just don’t. I don’t care that my six-year-old is wearing a hodge-podge bunch of stretchy comfort clothes accessorized with my oversized round sunglasses. (From the neck up, he looks like Babs.)
I don’t care that my purse is a canvas bag from Old Navy that I’m pretty sure is intended for schlepping groceries.
I don’t care that we have graduated from a critically acclaimed stroller to a beat-up red wagon.
I don’t care that I’m sporting second-day hair.
I just honestly don’t.
I’ve opted out of keeping up, and it’s kind of fabulous.