I am pushing 50. I have a child in college, one in high school, two in middle school, and a first grader. I am fairly certain that I am the oldest mother in my youngest child’s class, and I think the other moms might actually be afraid of me. It must be my wrinkles; I think they are scared they might catch them. Or maybe it’s my lingering ’80s fashion sense. Or perhaps it’s my, “I don’t have time for this crap, I have a million other things to worry about besides whose daughter is going to get the lead in the first grade production of ‘Mary Poppins.’” (And dear God, please don’t let it be my child.) But they shouldn’t be scared; they should be my friend, because us old moms make the best parenting allies, and here’s why:
Old moms don’t judge.
First of all, we are too tired, and second, we have been there. We know.
We won’t judge the double stuffed Oreos or orange Cheez Doodles in your kid’s lunch. We won’t judge lice. We won’t judge when your daughter teaches the class to twerk or your son drops the F bomb on the playground.
We won’t judge mismatched socks and pants that are too short. We won’t judge your messy house. We won’t judge when you have resorted to sniffing your children’s clothes to see if they are clean enough to wear again. We won’t judge when you bring cupcakes from the store to the bake sale and try to pass them off as homemade. We won’t judge your son when he insists on wearing a sparkly tiara to school. We won’t judge your daughter when she wears only army fatigues and combat boots.
We won’t judge when your child announces during share time that he heard lots of loud noises coming from your bedroom late last night. We won’t judge when you “forget” it’s your day for cafeteria duty. We won’t judge when you send your runny-nosed child to school pumped up on ibuprofen because you have a hair appointment and there is no way in hell you are going to live with those roots for another day. We won’t judge when you have too much to drink at the PTA Dance and do the Harlem Shake with the principal.
We won’t judge when your child throws spitballs during the morning assembly. Or farts during story hour. Or tells the class where babies really come from. Or decides to finally stand up for herself and gives the school bully the finger, right there, on stage, during her big debut as Mary Poppins.And we won’t judge when your smartest-in-the-class first grader turns fifteen, dyes her hair purple, pierces her nose and comes home drunk, or when your once-upon-a-time-perfect little Cub Scout is caught smoking weed and watching Internet porn in his friend’s basement.
And most importantly, we won’t judge when you start to get wrinkles. We won’t judge because we are old, and we are moms and we know.
(This post first ran on Scary Mommy)