Frumpy-looking moms in old jeans, hair in ponytails, spots on their clothes, tennis shoes: I get it now.
To the extent that mothers were on my radar at all before I had babies of my own, I had no idea why they would take it upon themselves to become unstylish. I thought maybe these sweatshirt and sneakers moms were just unstylish people, and I never thought I would count myself in their company. Not that I’m any sort of fashionista, but I try on clothes before I buy them, and I have some sense of what’s flattering.
With twin six-month olds, I don’t think I need to explain what I’m looking like these days, or why. I count it as an accomplishment finding time to take a shower every day. My overgrown hair…it’s going in a ponytail so it doesn’t get yanked. And anything I put on has to pass the, “Do I care if it gets spit up/drool/food stains on it?” This is not because I’m some frumpy-no-style who has given up all hope in her life–at least I hope not. I’m pretty sure it’s because I don’t have time.
Last month in the park I passed a group of teenagers. Two girls were doing a sort of bump and grind dance for the benefit of some boys sitting on a bench. As I passed with the babies in the huge double stroller, one of the boys called out, “You like that dance they’re doing?” And I suddenly saw myself through their eyes, as if I were ancient, just some mom passing by in the park.