Friday, November 5, 2010

Fashionable Friday: Other Mothers

I know, you're thinking "other mothers?" What the heck is she going to talk about today? And what do other mothers have to do with fashion. Keep reading and you will see.

Immediately after becoming a mother and taking the baby out to the store to run an errand or pick up groceries I noticed them. The other mothers. You know the ones I am talking about...they are pushing a stroller and maybe have a toddler and look calm, cool and put together. I wanted to be one of these other mothers and yet, 21 months later (and pregnant with #2 to boot) I am not.

Yes, there are days I hve my hair done and put on a cute outfit and do my makeup and feel good, and then I see one of those moms and I begin to doubt myself. It happens to all of us, at one time or another. We find ourselves thinking the other mom has it so much better, when in reality? We really don't know.

This doesn't stop us from looking and comparing, which leads me to what I did just the other day. And how I realized need to spend more time focusing on me each week. We were at the mall and before I was a mom, I would not have noticed any of the other mothers and their strollers, baby bags and children. But I did this time.

I was dressed in maternity jeans, soft turtleneck and my Old Navy sweater. I paired it with some leopard print flats and was good to go.

Now to give you some background, the nearest mall to us is pretty ghetto. They don't even have a Gap, which is where I needed to go so we went into the city of Atlanta in order to hit the closest Gap with maternity wear. The mall is close to the "snobby" part of town. It has it's share of Buckhead Betty's along with your typical mall folk.

When you work in corporate America, you tend to forget that malls are open during the week and there are actually parking spaces near the entrances. You forget that you don't have to fight crowds to browse and get customer service. What the mall is full of? Moms and their babies, baby bags, strollers and mom friends. And I noticed.

I noticed the mom with a newborn and looking like she'd never had a baby. I noticed the mom with the Hunter Jimmy Choo boots and Tory Burch pink trench. I noticed the mom with the designer stroller and baby bag. If you ask my husband? He will not have noticed these women. But I did and I compared.

And while I noticed clothing and bags and strollers, there was one mom in particular that I noticed. Maybe it was because we happen to sit across from her at lunch. Or maybe it was the way she looked so pulled together but not like she had tried.

This was when I realized that I could be the same. I had dressed and liked the way I looked but I could do more. This mom, she had her simple jewelry on, a beautiful designer bracelet and watch. Simple. She ha her hair in place but nothing fancy, no highlights, no blonde. Just brown and long. Her clothes were nothing fancy, sweater, jeans, flats. But what struck me? Was the fact that she had her nails painted. Not with a french manicure, just a simple dark color on short nails.

As I sat there and watched her interact with her baby and her husband, I knew I should be doing more. What keeps me from giving myself a manicure and painting my nails? While I don't have tons of time, I have a few hours before bed where I can do it. What keeps me from wearing more than earrings when I go out? I have a draw full of bracelets and necklaces and yet I only wear them when I travel. Or get super dolled up.

But why do I only do it then? I keep stressing how the little things can help us go from frump to fab and yet I still have a hard time implementing these small things. I deserve to look good and feel good. If it means slapping some paint on my nails, why don't I do it?

Most of the time when we compare ourselves to the other moms, it's turns into how inadequate we feel. How they look better, are better moms and we see ourselves struggling. But in this case? I'm glad I took a look around because it made me really open my eyes. Open my eyes to the fact that I CAN and SHOULD do more. I can't be a good mom and wife if I don't feel my best.

How about you? Ever see another mom and actually have an aha moment?

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