Every major milestone in my life has been later than what society says. I got married at 32, went to law school at 34, had my first child at 35, and my 2nd child at 36. You can just call me Leo the Late Bloomer. I worried about being an old mom. I will be 55 when my youngest graduates from high school and it terrifies me to think about how different I will be from his classmates’ parents. During my pregnancies, crazy thoughts would swirl in my head. Will their friends think I am their grandma? Will I live to see them graduate? Get married? Have my grandbabies? Now I embrace my old lady status just like I embrace my frown lines and bad hip and here’s why:
1. I can remember the history my kids are learning
My son had an assignment to ask his parents what they remember about the Oklahoma City bombing. Most of my son’s friends parents said they were in 5th or 6th grade. I, on the other hand, was in my 2nd year of teaching. BOOM! I am like a walking Encyclopedia Britannica! For you young whipper snappers, that’s what we used before Google. I can give my kids 1st hand recollection about something other mommas were too young to watch on TV. Can you say extra credit?
2. I don’t care what other people think
I have just recently fully accepted this one. So much of mommy-ness is based on “what will the other mommies think?” This used to play a major force in my decisions. Now, I’ve realized that I don’t give 2 biscuits about what other people think about my parenting, my Facebook posts, or the fact that my kid eats beef jerky and Cheese-Its for lunch.
3. I am all partied out.
20 year old Alicia was a different story. The weekends gave me LIFE and I lived it to the fullest. 45 year old Alicia has no desire to party every weekend, or really any weekend. Unless it is date night, or the occasional school mom outing, I am a total homebody. I still LIVE for the weekends, but now it is birthday parties, football games, plays, and family day trips to whatever free event is happening in the city.
4. It doesn’t take much for me to be the “cool mom”
I grew up listening to New Edition, L.L. Cool J, and Beastie Boys, so you would think I am one of those Old Jams kind of mom. Nope! All it takes is for me to pull up in the drop off line playing Kendrick Lamar and I get all the cool points!
5. I know better than to get mixed up in mama drama.
Mama drama, not to be confused with baby mama drama, may just be the messiest of all the dramas. From “I signed up for fruit kabobs, how dare she bring the same snack to the party!”, to clawing to the top of the school fundraiser sales rankings, being in the mist of a mama drama can be exhausting. You can very easily get sucked into a “she said she said” debate that will leave many causalities in its wake.
The precious brain capacity that I have left in my old age cannot be wasted on remembering who has a better pumpkin roll. So, in the words of my BFF, when they go low, we go high! When you know a mama is giving you the side eye about something that went down six months ago, I just turn on my best southern charm. I am so sappy sweet they begin to question their own hostility.
Being an older mom has given me the time needed to fully know who I am, the ability to be comfortable in my own skin, and have confidence in my decisions. Young mom’s may have the energy to run circles around us old moms, but we have the wisdom to say, “why do we need to run in circles?”