Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Brooklyn's Getting Older, Not Me!

You know the picture of that little baby covered in chocolate that's always been at the top of my blog? Well, here she is now. I don't know how it happened, but she's notsomuch a baby anymore. :(



My little Brooklyn started preschool last week. She's been looking forward to it all summer.

"When do I start school, Mama?"

"Five and a half more weeks, Honey."

The next day, she'd ask again, "When do I start school?"

"Still five and a half weeks, Oat."

"How many days is that?"

"Thirty-eight."

She'd pout and looked bummed. Then she'd brighten and ask, "Do I start tomorrow?"
"Nope. It's still thirty-eight more days."

"Oh," she'd say, seemingly understanding that the first day of school was still several days away. Then she'd eagerly ask, "Do I start yesterday?"

"Uhhh no, but let's hope your teachers show you a calendar and work on the concepts of today, tomorrow, and yesterday with you."

So, her first day finally arrived and she very excitedly galloped down the hallway to her classroom. I put on a brave face and walked my little girl into her preschool class. I looked around at all the moms dropping off their children. I think the average age of these parents was fifteen. When did everyone get so young? Oh well, that’s okay, I thought to myself. I’m a very young looking forty-year-old. No one would ever guess me to be forty. Just last month, I was carded at the grocery store for buying a bottle of wine. (Nevermind the fact that I’d driven miles out of my way just to buy my wine in a neighboring town that has to card every single person by law whether they look eight or eighty.)

And then it happened.

A woman said to me, “I see so many grandparents taking care of their grandkids while the parents work these days. That’s so nice of you to help out like that.” She smiled sweetly.

Surely, she wasn’t talking to me! I glanced over my shoulder. There was no one behind me. Grandparents? GRANDPARENTS! Oh no, she di’n’t! If only I had a cane I could trip her with! But instead of showing her how my arthritic old body could still kick her butt, I looked at her point-blank and asked, “How OLD do you think I am?”

She mumbled an apology and said something to the effect that she hadn't been talking about me, just grandparents in general. Although, a minute later, I think I heard her whisper to her friend, “Stay away from that grandma over there. She’s touchy about her age.”

Needless to say, after I kissed Brooklyn goodbye, I hurried out to my car and sped to my local salon for an “age-defying” facial.

I know this is just misdirected payback for a comment my ex made to the mother of one of Savannah's friends years ago. When Ann's (name has been changed to protect the innocent) mother came to pick her up from our house after a play date, Bob (name has been changed to protect the stupid) introduced himself and asked her if she was Ann's grandmother. She wasn't. And she wasn't amused. I was mortified. To this day, I can't look at her without feeling pangs of guilt from the horrible faux pas that transpired at my house all those years ago.

I used to be the "young mom" at the preschool. I did. When Austin attended there twelve years ago, I was young! Now, people think I entered the preschool by mistake and they try to give me directions to the senior center. Oh well. I guess I'll just have to hang out at the high school more often where I'm once again the young parent. I can enjoy being the young one there for a few more years until Brooklyn starts high school. And then I'll have a t-shirt made that reads, "No, I'm not her grandmother!"

40 comments:

Tonia said...

She must have been like 19 where anyone over 21 looks old to her. You do not look 40 but even if you did these days it's the norm for people to "start" having a family in their late 30's and early 40's; which makes you a young mom even with Brooklyn. Look at all the celebreties that are starting families in their 40's; they will be much older when their kids go to school. Jeesh. Maybe if you wore your hair gray I could see the dumb mistake but even then you have a very young face. What an ignorant assumption to make.

Angeldust47 said...

I had a similar problem!
I spent some weeks collecting my nephew from school this year and some people thought I was his grandmother!

Now bearing in mind my sister is approaching 50 this year (she had him later in life), how old do they think I am?

Sharon said...

From one older mom to another ...Cheers! We have wisdom and they have youth but some day they'll realize that wisdom is the better virtue to have! Love the new Facebook photo, damn you look good girl!

Kari in CO said...

OUCH! I can only imagine how much that stung. I am one of the "old" moms too. I didn't have my first child until I was 29. When my oldest went to preschool at 3, I swear I was old enough to be some of her classmates moms mom. I am not looking forward to when my youngest graduates high school. I'm sure I will get many "grandparent" comments.

No point of this comment, other than to let you know your aren't alone! LOL

heyteach said...

There are 15 years between me and my youngest sister. When she started high school my mom called me horrified saying "Cindy (the little sister of a girl who graduated with me) is your sister's biology teacher....how can I go to a parent teacher conference with someone I remember being potty trained?"

Nom de plume said...

Hi Dawn,
I'm reminded of a little while back when I was given a "seniors discount" on a coffee by the PERSON (too damn young to be working, I tell ya that) behind the counter. Here, you qualify for seniors discount if you ar over 55, no longer working, and have a seniors card. Me? - 42.

The store owner (who is male, and older than me) laughed at the girl, but for me? - all thoughts of a relaxing cuppa were gone, replaced with deepest mortification and a desire to cry in a corner somewhere. I left my money on the counter (bother) and left the shop.

Worse, I then ran into my Dad - who had just retired and qualified for the seniors discount - and got quite teary while I told him. He laughed. I'm still working on finding the funny side!

Worst of all - whenever I tell that story to other women, you can feel the sympathy but SEE them thinking it glad it wasn't them.

Brooklyn is gorgeous x

Sherry said...

I feel your pain. We took our kids to our State Fair and took them to the DNR fishing pond on Grandparents Day when the Grandparents could fish with the kids. We didn't sign up so they kept asking us..."Will a grandparent be joining them?" They then looked at my husband (haha) and asked him if he was going to fish. But in all fairness, my husband has a 31-year old who has 2 boys and our kids are 15, almost 8 and just turned 6. We are grandparents but not of our own kids!

Heidi said...

First of all, love your blog :) Second, you so do not look like a grandma. And it has nothing to do with the fact that I myself am 38 and have a 6 week old (my first child BTW). I think that until you are close the the thirty plus age range you have telling how old someone is in that same age range. For example, I was working in the ceramic studio at the university. I had graduated already, but was still taking classes to work on my portfolio for grad applications. A class was going on that mostly had freshman in it. At the time I was only 25. A student came up and asked me some questions about ceramic stuff. They seemed to think I was a professor. Although I appreciated the complement that I was a professor, I didn't appreciate that the student thought I was 40 :)

Simple Country Girl said...

You look nothing like a grandma! By the way, I LOVE the new facebook pic! I must share something that happened to me that came back to bite me in the rear end. I have been a girl scout leader for 5 years, thank goodness this is the last year since my daughter is now in 5th grade. Well, 3 years ago we had a girl in the troop and the lady who always brought her looked like she was in her late 50s. Well, at the father-daughter dance later in the year, I was talking to the girl and her dad (I should add her parents were divorced) and said "I saw your grandma today in Wal-Mart." They both looked at me and said "Grandma????" I quickly realized the grandma figure was her mother. Worst part of all, her ex husband had the biggest laugh of his life right there at my expense. I never could look the woman in the eye the remainder of the year. And her daughter never returned to our troop after that year. So now I never assume, I just keep my mouth shut if I don't know. Even though that happened 3 years ago, I still hang my head when I see this lady at school events. There are just some things you never live down!

Cinderella (aka Kristin) said...

My goodness, I did that once, only it was a neighbor from down the street. And in all fairnesss, another neighbor had told me he thought that little Cindy was the granddaughter, seeing as the other two daughters are in college :) I guess Cindy was a big oops and the mom - not the grandma - took it well and told me she gets it all the time. I still feel bad. But I don't have to go on field trips with them :)

I just noticed that this year too, that I have a warped image of my age, I suppose. I looked around at all these moms and I thought "geez, they're doing well for having had babies at 15...I mean they look like responsible adults and all that. Kudos to them." Truth? These are 25-somethings who are having children at a normal age, but the Scarlett O'Hara in me keeps thinking I'm freaking 25 instead of 38.

MaBunny said...

Aww Dawn , she looks so happy! and NO you don't look like her grandmother!
Hope she enjoys preschool as much as she thought she would!

Megryansmom said...

Bwahahaha that happened to me YEARS ago, before I was a grandmother and I was PISSED! Now that I am a grandma, sadly, it never happens.

Nikki said...

I was asked with our last "how old is your grandson?" I was only 41 and he was just a few weeks old. I was neither impressed or amused. I feel your pain.

Jill in MA said...

Oh no she didn't!! And you do NOT look like a grandma!!
I'm trying to decide if that's worse than when someone at my daughter's pre-school last week said, "So you're expecting another one...?" Ah, no... that would be the "baby weight" I put on five years ago!!

V1nce said...

"until Brooklyn starts high school. And then I'll have a t-shirt made that reads, "No, I'm not her grandmother!"

You know by then they'll say great-great-grandma right? Before you swipe me with the cane you don't have just remember I'm talking about how stupid people can be, nothing about you age.

I've learned a long time ago, never even in jest refer to a lady's weight, dress size, hair, possible pregnancy, taste in Harlequin Romance novels, nails, shoes... uh now that I mention it I've learned not to refer to a lady's anything. There's only so much scar tissue my body can handle.

Amy said...

I laughed out loud at the "to protect the stupid" comment! That just struck me as so funny for some reason. You are hoot! ;o)

WeaselMomma said...

Ouch! Next time just tell her 'You just hope you're still getting some action when you turn my age'.

That'll fix em.

The Mommy said...

That's just not right. I will be 41 when my youngest starts preschool (in 3 years, yikes!). If anyone asks ME that, I can't guarantee I will handle it as, uh, maturely as you did.

I am a horrible, horrible, horrible judge of age. I never presume to know how old someone is. Ever. I will say that if I was forced to guess (like, at gunpoint or something) I would guess 28? LOOK AT YOUR FACEBOOK PHOTO, GIRL! That chick does NOT look like a GRANDMOTHER!! SHEESH!

PS Sorry for all those caps but, yes, I was yelling at the computer as I typed them...

Losing Brownies said...

Oh no! I would never mistake you for a grandmother!

Nekaya said...

Dawn, you look simply mahvelous!! And let it be known (to those oh-so-dense pre-school parents) that some of us had our first, and only children, at age 40...so there! And look on the bright side: at least that woman didn't ask when you were due! lol

Busy Mom said...

I've gotten it twice.

Purple Quilter Queen said...

Surely you weren't in your finest form that day, because looking at your facebook photo, you look amazing!!! No where near grandmotherly age!! Some people have the nerve!! You keep rockin' it Dawn! Jenn

~Tammy~ said...

I recently went to a baby shower for a former co-worker. There I was introduced to the new wife of another former co-worker. She appeared to be fairly far along in pregnancy herself.

To my credit, I refrained from asking her when her baby was due. Instead I asked another friend who still worked for the company... I was SO glad I kept my mouth shut. The young lady was just chubby.

Laura ~Peach~ said...

i am 43 and the grandma of a 16 month old and soon to have a new born with me as well... I feel your pain.
she is growing up so fast!

Cheryl said...

Last spring I was picking up a good friend's child from preschool, and was asked if I was his grandmother. This other mother apparently thought there was a family resemblance between me and my friend, and jumped straight to mother-daugher rather than, say, sisters.

Nevermind that I'm younger than my friend and was 8 months pregnant at the time.

Some people need to have their vision checked. Or skip that and declare them legally blind.

sassynach said...

I feel like an "old" mom too--my youngest is in kindergarten and I'm 39! I feel like everyone else is so much younger and more hip...although I DO feel a bit wiser. ;)

Cheryl said...

Eleven months ago I had my seventh child at the age of 42 years old and I know exactly what you are saying. I could really be my daughter's grandmother according to my age. I am trying to prepare myself for the first comment about me being her grandmother. I am going to try to keep a sense of humor about it...and then I'm probably going to run and get myself an age defying facial...lol

jdb in AZ said...

Just tell 'em you're old enough to know better, but young enough to get away with it.

Or, tell 'em you're old enough to sleep alone, and smart enough to do it.

Steph said...

I'm the youngest of 6 kids. Once, right after my mom chopped my long blond hair into a boy's haircut, I was out with my father. Someone made a comment about how nice it was to see him and his grandson out and about. His response was "Actually, that's my daughter." The poor girl was horrified!

Julie said...

Got to love the stupid people in life. Without them, what would we write about?
I feel your pain. I'm 42 with a 2 year old so I'm sure I'll get the grandmother comment when he goes to school. I need to come up with a good comeback to have ready.

Marly said...

Seriously? Did you paint on wrinkles or something? I'm one of those "young" moms, and I don't think you look like a grandma.
Maybe this will make you feel better. I was at the store with my friend who is 15 years older than me and the lady helping told her she told her 'daughter' she would be right out. Umm, seriously? She's not my mom. People should really think before they speak.

Missi said...

Grandmother.....What? Maybe you should freak her out & carry one of Brooklyn's baby dolls in one day while dropping her off.

My hubby & I met a couple friends to go bowling a few weeks ago. While paying & getting our shoes it was mentioned that it was his birthday. The guy (young kid) asked how old he was. He answered, 37. Then the kid says "My mom just turned 37". I am also 37 & I realize that after getting married young (age 18) we waited a few years to have children, but still. That made me feel old. Another young kid not much older steps up & says first kid just started working here. I said that didn't make me feel any younger.

Danielle said...

Brooklyn is growing up to really resemble Lexi! Wow!

lori said...

grandma, thats nothing. i went with a friend of mine when she had to have same day surgery. she is one year older then me. when i was walking into the pre op room with her the nurse said "no visitors, oh thats your mother its ok if she comes." so i look like a 50somethings mother. which means i must look 70something.

Becs said...

I don't think you can win either way. I had my first at 25, and you would have thought I was 15 by the way people treated me. Mind you, my husband and I had been married longer than most people who were giving us those looks and significantly more education.

Still I guess I would rather be thought younger than older, but just not THAT young.

ElleBee said...

Oh sweet mercy...this scares me more than a little bit. I'm 41 and expecting our third son in 11 days. My others are 10 and 4. I'll be 46 before Mr. Baby goes to kindergarten, 56 when he starts high school, and 62 when he graduates from college...hmm. It's not even 9 AM and I think I need a drink!

Vadercat said...

Haha! The thing about the concepts of time (Yesterday, tomorrow, etc.) reminds me of what my little sister used to say xD! ANYTHING that took place anywhere in the past was "Las' night." (Last night)

And... I'm surprised you didn't slug that lady in the face... I would've had to HOLD MYSELF BACK. I would have at least said, "I'm her MOM."

That reminds me of the time when my older sister ((Currently at time was 15)) took my younger sister ((Currently at time was 4)) to the bathroom in this restaurant we were at... I didn't go with her, but when she came back she was really angry and upset looking, but wouldn't say what was wrong. Later, I found out a (*Cough* grumpy old lady) late-middle aged lady looked at her when she walked in and said, "She ruined your life, didn't she?"
When my sister was confused, the lady continued, "Your daughter?" in a really condescending, snooty manner.

Now, my sister is REALLY timid-ish and shy, but this made her mad. If I had been her, I would have TOLD THAT LADY OFF, but that's just me with my... violentness...

Anyway, my sister said, "Excuse me, she's my SISTER," and left. Funny thing is, if Raisha (My younger sister) HAD been her daughter, that would have meant that Nadia (Older sis) was 11 when she had her! xD


-Natasha (Remember when you made it where you had to have an email to comment? I told you that Vadercat2006 is always me, but I'm just makin' sure you remember :) I'll try to always put "-Natasha" at the end. But I probably;y won't remember most of the time xD.)

dark_chocolate said...

Okay, really, some people just cannot accurately guess age. I had people tell me I look in my late twenties, and others say I look 17. Who do I listen to? The people who are more accurate, that's who! (Those are the ones that say I look 17, by the way. LOL. I am 21. :) So you should just ignore those people, they don't know you anyways. And plus, you look so frickin' da*n hot (& young) in that facebook picture! I cannot believe that some people would mistake you for a grandma; those people are just weird, I tell you! :)

PamGram said...

I have also been the "young" mom and the "not-so-young mom".I had my 1st at 17 and #5 at nearly 39.At least it's not as bad as my sister inlaw who had twins at 49.It was her 2nd set of twins.What was she thinking?What was I thinking? AAAGHH!!!

Stressed Out said...

okay about 8 years ago (I was 37, my oldest was 15 and my youngest was almost 4) I went into the local AAA agency with my oldest and youngest daughters. The woman there was on the phone and said "I gotta go. Some lady's here with her daughter and her granddaughter"?!?!?!?!? Even if my 15 year old was technically able to be a mother, she wasn't old enough to have a 4-year-old!!! I still tell that story to this day about how people should think before they speak. (I say this because my oldest sister is 18 years older than me and my mother was accused of being my grandma many a time when I was little.)

I also believe in karma and that woman has a doozy due her!!!

Who's Visiting My Blog Right Now?

 
Home About Dawn Blog Books News & Events Press Kit FAQS Photos Video Fun Mom's Time Out Get In Touch

Dawn Meehan 2008-. All Rights Reserved.
Site Design by Pulse Point Design