Monday, 26 December 2011
I was having a light conversation with one of my Twitter followers the other day, and they asked me what I was doing for Christmas. I told them we were taking my son to his paternal grandparents' house. He then proceeds to tell me, "You're a mom? Wow! You look too good to be a mom." It reminded me of this incident about 8 months ago when a gal pal and I went to a club for the first time since I had my son. She is single and on the prowl, so when a group of guys invited us to their booth, she said yes. I was just happy that we could finally sit down. Anyway. She is chatting up this guy that she found really attractive, and I was people watching. A guy in the group came over and started small talk. I told him I was not single, and he agreed to keep the conversation appropriate. Somehow, the subject of children came up and I mentioned I have a son. His eyes got wide and he said, "What?! I don't believe you. You can't have a kid. Your body is too good to have had kids."
I don't know what that means, but I didn't quite know how to react. I thanked him for the "compliment" but at the same time, I was still thinking, "What the?"
I know that it's somewhat of a stereotype that moms dress frumpy, have no social life outside of play dates and family night, and have that dreaded lower stomach "pouch." I just don't understand why the term "mom" seems to have become so looked down upon that people say things like that. I am pretty sure he didn't mean it the way I took it, but it doesn't change the fact that I felt the way I do about it. I like to dress up like any other woman does. Just because I wear high heels outside of the house doesn't mean that I stay that way. When I go home, I am in hoop shorts and a t-shirt. Sometimes, I stay in hoop shorts and a t-shirt if I am just running to the store.
I get that a lot of women "let themselves go" after they have kids out of sheer laziness. Those aren't the women I am talking about. Some women have kids and their bodies looked like the children moved back into their womb. I was blessed to be able to not gain too much weight while I was pregnant, and I was also blessed to be able to have lost it all fairly quickly and have no stretch marks whatsoever. However, I had time to work out two hours every day and had a job as a nanny in a house that had workout equipment as well. So when the kids took a nap, I hopped onto the elliptical.
The women I am referring to are the ones who actually do care but don't always have the opportunity or time to focus on themselves. I'm referring to the mothers who are so busy taking care of their families that they don't even think about themselves. Most women work (some long hours and away from home), and have to take care of the family. Some women go to school on top of that, and we can't forget the single moms who work, go to school, and take care of their kids. The Stepford wife standard is just insane. We aren't perfect. It's a lot more efficient and comfortable to clean the house in sweat pants and house shoes instead of high heels and a pencil skirt. You wake up early and get the kids ready for school. You get yourself ready for work. You come home and make dinner, finish errands, maybe do homework if you are in school, and somewhere in all the hullabaloo you are supposed to worry about how your arm flab looks in your sweatshirt?
Am I just over reacting? Like I said, I thanked him for his "compliment" but I feel like something like that shouldn't be completely considered a compliment. Would someone be offended if someone said, "Oh, yeah you look like a mom"?