Lately, I've been a slacker. Not only have I not posted daily for awhile, but quite a few of my posts have been (ahem!) heavy on the photos and a little light on the reflective commentary.
But here's the thing. We're leaving on a trip in a couple of days to visit Kurt's Dad, and although I've done absolutely nothing to prepare for it, I've spent PLENTY of time stressing about the impending packing, planning, and worrying the accompanies our family vacations. I do have good reason. The last time we ventured out on a similar trip, we forgot to put shoes on my daughter.
Oh, and the boys officially turn 3 on Monday. So in addition to planning for their party, which started out as a "small gathering" but has now ballooned to about 25 guests, I've been in my usual birthday funk. Don't get me wrong. I love my kids, I love birthdays, and I revel in planning themed parties. I just hate it that each birthday means my children are growing up. I know I'm a complete freak when I say this, and I try not to think about it, really. But for me, each birthday that I celebrate, whether it be mine, the kids' or Kurt's, is a real reminder time goes on whether I want it to or not. Children grow, things change, and each birthday celebration reminds me that it is one less birthday that I will spend with them, and that sort of depresses me.
And if I wasn't already feeling old enough...
This week at the grocery store something happened to me that has never happened before. The kids and I were shopping when we spotted the daughter of one of my neighbor's bagging groceries. We approached her to say hello, and as we did, I could see her visibly change. She looked at me really politely, smiled and said hello, and answered my questions about her summer was going with polite one-and-two word answers.
Then the crushing blow came: She referred to me as a "Mrs." when introducing me to the other cashier.
Not that big of a deal, right? I mean, I've gotten the obligatory "Ma'am" comments in the past, but I've always brushed those off because I felt young, hip, in touch with today's generation. Heck, I still get carded every time I set foot in a liquor establishment. But this was different.
This girl, who is a junior in high school, treated me the way I used to treat the elderly women in my church. You know that drill? You smile politely, answer questions cautiously, and give those little elderly people the utmost respect.
I shouldn't be surprised. I mean, there I was, some 35-year old in an old college t-shirt with 3 kids in tow, trying to act hip but looking pretty pathetic to a 17-year old who babysits my kids once in a while.
But the whole situation still stung. Because I expect that behavior from my preschooler's generation, or even a elementary-aged child's friends -- to those ages I AM old. But up until that eye-opening exchange, I still felt connected to the teenage/college aged group of kids. I felt like one of them, not one of their mom's friends.
It's all good though. I'm not going to dwell on it because I have too many things on my plate right now, like stuffing a sun-shaped pinata and baking a cake that's supposed to resemble a beach.
Umm, wow. I have become one of my friend's moms....
Friday, June 22, 2007