FILED IN: Parenting

Skating Through Life, Talking Street and Living with Almost Etnies

With school having started I’ve had to finally face the fact that my kids have outgrown EVERYTHING and perhaps consider that we may actually have to, you know, get out of the house!

Thank goodness the mall is air-conditioned, but — here’s the thing — I hate back-to-school shopping!

The Gap, Aeropostale, Limited Too, Abocrombie and — DAMN, but retail therapy can get very, very expensive — whoever thought buying clothes for children could turn into such a moral dilemma!?!?

But, then again, I have a business meeting in October — yes, meeting professionals with careers and goals, other than the ones I normally pursue, along the sidelines, as a well-seasoned soccer mom — and I do want to look a little more put-together and a lot less… you know… suburban-mommy in the big city.

Although it would make a great title for a Lifetime movie, yes?

Don’t get me wrong — my closet isn’t all Old Navy and Target — I have a wide variety of tastes in clothes (depending on my mood) and don’t subscribe to any one particular style. But, these people are involved in the marketing industry and I’m a little more… you know… used to rapping to my kids in a hoodie!

I’m not saying that working people don’t know how to get down, and dirty — though my husband and his pals prefer business casual, they’re pretty much freaks after normal banking hours — but, somehow I suspect that flip-flops, jeans and a skull-studded black t-shirt…wasn’t going to cut it.

No matter.

It’s supposed to be different when you have kids (isn’t it?) and the things that I used to think were important (like taking showers and getting dressed…everyday) just aren’t, anymore.

They’ve been replaced with magazine sales, cookie bakes, soccer cleats and getting pumped-up over a picture of you… with your hair a mess and hips gone wild… in crayon!

“Why don’t you get something nice, for change and don’t even think about coming home with another hoodie!”

Yes, I know, we may have to consider leaving the kids at home — bad mommy, bad daddy, stupid expense reports — but, some people might consider me… in all my precious mommy-gear… to be… well, bad form.

Besides, my husband… I mean.

But, our family has grown accustomed to skating through life and my husband and I appreciate the fact that our kids don’t really seem to miss having, you know, all that much.

Until.

“Yo, these pants is trippin’!”

HUH?

“True that!”

WA-HUH?

 “Wear dis and you be bustin’ B-town!”

OKAY, STOP!

As a parent, I happen to believe my children our brilliant and am very proud of the fact that my two oldest girls are straight-A, honor students.

So what?

I’ve also grown accustomed to not pushing the academics too much — the thought of shooting for scholarships, YES! — but, we’ve learned to make a few allowances. Especially, when it comes to aiding in their attempts at finding and expressing themselves, freely.

Although, “dis” and “you be” did make me want to throw up a little!

Don’t worry, I’m usually the first to admit that my children are NOT perfect — I am their mother, after all — but, my husband and I want them to be comfortable with who they are and understand that it’s okay to be different.

My eleven-year-old is currently finding herself “goth.”

“No…it’s STREET…Momma!”

Whatever.

“I could use a new pair of  Etnies!”

What?

You know, the sneakers that are ALL the rage in the skateboarding sect and all the cool kids were wearing on the playground, last year. Except, I’m not buying it. If you did, don’t worry — it’s not you, it’s me — and my girls (and the boy) are probably salivating over them, right now!

But, I was able to find a similar pair — for a lot less — and Thing Two calls them  her “almost Etnies.”

“They look a whole lot like the real thing…but, way cheaper!”

FO-SHIZZLE!

Okay, stop.

Pop culture… sub-culture… call it what you want — I was totally punk, back in my day and around the time dinosaurs ruled the earth — the desire for us (and our children) to fit in is strong, indeed.

Sort of like mommybloggers, blogging mothers, mothers who blog, women who happen to have children and a blog.

Whatever.

All I know is, no matter what I decide to buy, or how many hats I wear, there are only four people who can truly call me Mommy.

Even thought it’s more like:

“Mooooooooommmmmmeeeee!”

Like my children, I shouldn’t be afraid to express myself — especially, when there are plenty of people, out there, who don’t necessarily want to know me, or even get a chance to appreciate what they see — so, I should I really be worried that Thing Two talks…uh…what is it again?

“It’s called Street…don’t ask!”

My poor husband — the man looked like a dear in headlights — he just sort of stared, and gave me the Daddy-look.

“Um…should I be worried?”

He recovered, pretty quickly, and did manage to pick his mouth up from off the floor and compliment Thing Two on her new “skull cap” from Hot Topic.

“She’s fine and we’re good!”

I’ll be fine, too — being a parent doesn’t stop when your kids are in school and people are just beginning to learn that there’s a lot more to a mother, than what lies beneath the hoodie — I think!

Then again, after seventeen years of marriage — not to mention, raising four kids, killer dust bunnies, dealing with a mountain of expenses, and stuff we haven’t even begun to talk about, yet — he’s used to coming home and not expecting anymore than…different.