One morning you find yourself gathering a load of diapers off the nursery floor from your twins’ nightly pee pee/poopey bender, singing Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall” but substituting “We don’t need no stinky diapers” into the lyrics, and you realize- Wow, I will never be cool again.
Not that I ever was. I can’t claim much of a relationship with cool aside from a distant, brief flirtation, like Indian food or snap bracelets. I’m sure I’ve wanted to be cool. Hasn’t everyone? But even that wanting seems so far away now, a little speck on the horizon. Perhaps its for the best, you can’t really miss what you never had.
I’ve heard it said that there are “cool moms.” Cool moms are like unicorns, a delightful idea, but total fiction. Moms are not cool. Cool and Mom and different animals entirely. Cool is tight leather trousers and spikey hair, tight young bodies that dance all night and sleep until 3 in the afternoon, then light up a doob and jam on guitar all day, waxing poetic about the Sex Pistols and how the posers nowadays have ruined punk. Cool is having nothing but a half-eaten bag of cheetos in your cupboards and laughing about it. Any Mom with that lifestyle can’t really be a good Mom, can she? Cool Mom = Bad Mom.
I met one of these so-called “Cool Moms” in college. One word. Yikes. I went to college abroad, and during my freshman year I was in student housing (big mistake, I was much happier when I found my own place) with loads of whiney study abroad students (and a few great ones) that changed every term. One of the former brought her mother to stay in our very overcrowded accommodations for 2 weeks. Not cool. Its one thing for one’s boyfriend to spend the night, quite another for one’s mother to move in. The mother in question was one of those creepy best friend/mothers who share clothing with their teenage daughters and bought them beer in high school. That is not being cool, that is desperately trying to re-gain one’s youth and messing up one’s daughter in the process. Anyway, this mom wore tight little age 19 appropriate clothes like us, and more black eyeliner than all of us put together. She was addicted to nicotine and tanning beds and the whole effect was depressing and horrible. Mutton dressed as lamb dressed as Britney in the early 00s. Her daughter was a brat. I don’t believe in calling children brats, but after the age of 18, its fair game. The girl was in one of the greatest cities in the world for one semester only, and spent it occasionally whining in the kitchen, but mostly locked in her room talking on the phone. About what, I don’t know, I could never hold any kind of conversation with the girl. She was one of the few people I’ve met in my life who had absolutely no sense of self. None. I partially blame her mother for that, because I don’t think she ever had the chance to form a sense of self. Her mother was always there doing the same things, wearing the same clothes, living through her and leaving her a sad little shell with no individual interests or experience, who couldn’t handle the world outside her.
In the end, good Moms are not cool, they are wonderful, awesome, creative, patient, kind, fun, clever and loving. Any and all of the above trump cool in my book any day of the week.