"That" Mom

Tuesday, June 12, 2007 14 Comments A+ a-

I’ve been sitting on this topic for a couple of weeks now for a few reasons, mostly because I’ve just been processing the conversations and two, I hate to admit that I’m now “that” mom.

On our anniversary, Jon and I had a great conversation over dinner about our relationship; the history of it; and how far we’ve come. It was wonderful to talk with just the two of us, without having to jiggle a baby on our shoulder or reach over and wipe up spilt milk, you get the idea. The conversation was deep, romantic, and some special memories were shared.

And then it happened… I asked the question that NO wife should ever ask. “Do you miss anything from our earlier years?” Jon hemmed and hawed until I finally convinced him that it wouldn’t hurt my feelings. He grudgingly shared that he missed my fashion sense. Me?! What was he talking about?! And so, through the rest of our dinner we talked through what Jon now deemed my “mommy wardrobe”. Essentially, he misses my short shorts (those will never be back, my dear), the tank tops, the cute dresses and matching shoes, the extra care on my hair and make-up, etc. and how my usual wardrobe (outside of work) now consists of jeans and t-shirts.

A week later I was sitting on Courtney’s bed watching her get all dolled-up for a date with her boyfriend, Jeremy. Now for those of you that have seen pictures of my youngest sister, you know how incredibly beautiful she is (try being related to her, the three of us just hate her!) and how trendy she dresses. So, there we were, the mommy in jeans and a t-shirt, watching the younger sister put on cute shorts and a darling shirt. I watched as she put in the pretty earrings (another thing gone by the wayside, my holes have even closed up) and the matching bracelet on her wrist when I decided to bring up the conversation that Jon and I had the previous week. Courtney gave me a smile and I knew instantly what she was going to say. “I didn’t want to say anything but…” Ack! You mean it’s true?!?

And so, these are the conversations I’ve been processing. When did it happen? When did I go from cute, trendy Jenn to the practical, comfortable mom? And so now I’m evaluating; I find that I do miss the cute clothes and the matching accessories. I do miss feeling feminine and pretty when I’m out running errands, at church, or on a date with Jon. I don’t know when I came to the conclusion that being a mom meant covering up. (Don’t get me wrong here; I think there’s a dark, definitive line between showing some skin and dressing modestly.) Thus I’ve come to some conclusions. First of all, I want my husband to be attracted to me; I want to look nice for him; I want to feel his flirtatious glance in my direction. Secondly, I am only 27 years old and I need to start dressing much younger than I currently am. And lastly, I need to reclaim myself again. For almost three years now, I’ve been identified as the mommy, but I want to start dressing for myself, instead of for practicality’s sake.

So now, whether it seems shallow or not, I’ve made some personal goals. One of which it to become the cool, hip mom I always wanted to be. Yes, it’ll be a little harder to wipe spit-up off a rayon shirt, harder than the cotton t-shirt, but at least I’ll feel good about myself again. And two, I’m looking forward to rekindling some of the spark from the earlier days in our marriage.

[Edited to add: I hope this post does not reflect badly on Jon; I don't think he was out-of-line or wrong for mentioning this. I know how much he loves me and respects me, regardless of how I'm dressed or look on the outside. I just think it's important for a husband and wife to want to please each other and I'm thankful he felt comfortable enough to share this insight with me.]

I’m a coffee drinking, book reading, laundry procrastinating, husband and children loving, mess of a woman who believes that chips and salsa can fix anything. We have chickens running around the backyard, a mountain of dishes in the sink, and on any given morning, I have at least 10 school forms that need my signature or initials. It’s a crazy life {I prefer to call it controlled chaos}, but its ours.

14 comments

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Wendy
AUTHOR
12:35 PM delete

It's always interesting to hear what different men prefer. My husband likes me to be pretty natural...little make-up, jewelry, etc. This suits me fine because I am kind of a plain Jane. I don't want to let myself go by any means, but I dress pretty plain, unless I am going out or to church.

I think it is wise of you to think about what he said and make some changes, but I hope you don't put too much pressure on yourself.

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Munchkin Land
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12:41 PM delete

Thanks Wendy! No worries, I'm not pressuring myself. I'm mostly doing this for myself; Jon's comments just made me pause and reflect.

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Sarah
AUTHOR
1:30 PM delete

Oh Jenn,
I'm so glad you caught on about this early on and are making the efforts to look good, for your man and for yourself. I see so many frumpy moms and it's sad. Where does it say in scripture that we are supposed lose all sense of style and sexiness when we have children? One can be sexy, stylish, classy and modest all at the same time, it's what I aim for every day (okay, almost every day). I'm not sure exactly why, but I've never fallen into the frump trap and don't intend to. Maybe it's because I've read Captivating, maybe it's because I know how visual Travis is and how much he enjoys it when I look good, or maybe it's simply because I care enough about myself not to let myself go. The only hard thing about staying stylish for me is money. I am committed to staying within my monthly personal budget, and sometimes that doesn't leave much room for new clothes. But I'm with you girl! Here's to never letting ourselves be frumpy...EVER!

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Amy
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2:22 PM delete

I agree with Wendy...it is interesting to hear what other men prefer. My husband prefers me in nice jeans and a casual top--but he likes them to fit! I'm into balance these days;) Practicality mixed with some trendiness!

Anyway, long story short...I'm actually working on the same thing! I look back on pictures from the year after Parker was born and I'm amazed at how little I thought of my appearance.

By the way, I think that you look SO cute in all of your pictures!

love you! Amy

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Dana
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2:34 PM delete

hmmm I didn't notice a "mommy" Jenn when I saw you for lunch last summer. I feel like I've already started getting a little drab with my wardrobe, but I think part of it (at least for me, and I'm obviously not even a mom yet) is that I unfortunately have more practical things to buy than the matching jewelry or *sigh* cute shirts. I felt so boring and adult when I bought a vaccuum cleaner last month.

BUT with that said, I think it's important to feel good about ourselves too and it's practical (not shallow) to admit a good portion of that lays in how we look and our appearance. You're a hot mommy Jenn--go get yours! haha!

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Jennisa
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8:25 PM delete

I think my husband would say "amen" to this! I too find it easier to just throw on whatever I find. After all, I just got done getting the 2 girls ready, and who has time, right? I'm struggling with the nursing pads showing through all my shirts thing right now. I like to wear more fun and thin tops in the summer, but those darn nursing pads are sooooo noticeable! urgh!

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Elise
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9:29 PM delete

I've only recently begun to work harder on this aspect - and Kev didn't even ask me.

But I find that a simple cotton skirt and anice, fitted t-shirt do wonders for my outlook! Add in some hoop earrings and my hair pulled into a barrette, and I'm stylin'! Way more than I was, anyway.

You are wise to take into consideration Jon's thoughts - you must love him or something! :)

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Christine
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6:12 PM delete

It doesn't reflecy badly on jon at all. we should try to please our spouses in our physical appearance too. Good luck getting back to your cutie-patootie self!

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9:05 PM delete

So, are you going to show us some pictures of your new wardrobe? :)

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Overwhelmed!
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11:08 PM delete

First of all, I don't think this post reflects badly on Jon in any way. I think his honesty is important.

Oronzo goes for the very natural look...no makeup, no painted nails, the casual look.

Even so, there are times when I feel as though I should be making more of an effort for myself. I fall into the "comfortable mom" look all too often.

Part of the problem is that it's not cheap to dress cute and trendy.

So, if you wouldn't mind offering tips on the ways you're going about dressing a bit more trendy, please let me know! :)

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Org Junkie
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4:39 PM delete

Gosh I think every mom at one time or another can relate to this post for sure. I hope you share some before and after pictures with us. I'm looking for some inspiration!

Laura

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Joy
AUTHOR
12:21 AM delete

You go girl! I don't think this post reflects badly on Jon at all...I think it show that you guys have a great relationship that he would share that with you, and that you could hear it without being offended. I love to dress up and I think that it's wonderful to try to please your man...too often, like Sarah said in her comment, the frumpy mommy takes over and the cute stylish one is lost forever. Good for you!
Blessings,
Joy

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Paula
AUTHOR
6:03 AM delete

Oh Jen, Oh Jen, Oh Jen~~ I hear you 100%!!! I actually like myself best on Sunday because it is the only day I wash AND fix my hair, put on make up and don't wear oversized clothes.
Why is that mommy's do this. Get up and go look....not always the best.

I am with you, after this baby I am going to ask for new clothes for Christmas and try to be half way trendy. You are right 27 is NOT old and 30 isn't either. We can look good and be moms too.

BTW~~ Your sister is no prettier than you!! You ALL four are beautiful!!

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Classic MaMa
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8:12 AM delete

I really enjoyed/identified with this post. As I sit here in my husband's t-shirt and old pair of mesh shorts, I find it difficult to be comfortable in anything but this uniform. My husband doesn't really notice that I've become that mom, but I certainly have. (sigh) Two kids, different body, busy life...I would also like to reclaim the way I once looked.

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