Am I the only one who often gets mistaken for a teenager, more specifically a teen mom? From the moment that my belly started showing with my first child my age was always a concern to others, especially complete strangers. Their concern stems more from what they perceive as my youthful looks and less from a simple conversation. What doesn’t help is that I married someone who gets carded wherever he goes. My husband looks like a varsity basketball player for the local high school. Here are some comical things I’ve experienced in regards to our “youthful looks” and having kids.
You know what they say about assumptions
I can keenly remember going to the nail salon to get my pigs in blanket massaged when I was eight months pregnant, The nail tech, although very sweet, mustered up enough courage to ask me how my mother felt about my pregnancy. I quickly responded with a big oblivious smile “she is elated and filled with joy”. The tech quipped, “I wouldn’t be too excited about my child having a baby at such a young age”.
If my eyes, thoughts, and body language were daggers, she surely would have been 6 feet under. I kindly responded, “After receiving my Masters, getting married, and buying a house, I think twenty nine is a darn good age to get pregnant”. I kindly picked her jaw off the floor and tipped her $10 and a smile. The moral? Don’t just assume that someone is younger than they look, instead, stir up a genuine conversation and you’ll be sure to find out that looks can be deceiving.
As a kid I loved the baby sitters club series. My friends and I would read every single book and trade them with each other. As an adult with two kids, I’ve been mistaken for being the baby sitter. Last year, when getting our AC looked at in our house the repair guy was reluctant to have me sign off on the repair slip, he asked if the owner of the house was home.
As I held my youngest on my side and watching my oldest color, I laughed so hard. I told the repair guy that last time I checked I paid my mortgage last month unless there was something that he knew but I didn’t. He almost bit his tongue as he back tracked on his words, and went on to sing me compliments about my youthful appearance even after having kids. He said he thought I was the babysitter. While, a tad bit uncomfortable, I told him thank you and sent him on his way.
Fun with my siblings
Once while visiting my husband’s family in Mississippi we were mistaken for the older siblings of my kids. We had to stop by a CVS to get a prescription for my oldest. The pharmacist would not speak to my husband and I , rather she decided in her head that the mother of my kid was my mother in law. Once we got wind of what was going on, I asked the pharmacist why she wasn’t making eye contact with me? She replied, “younger siblings can’t pick up medications”.
Aside from the fact that that was a policy that I’ve never heard of, I was furious and told her that ” I am his mother and I know this because I pushed him out and vividly remember the 17 hours of labor , furthermore, my husband, not my brother was the one to cut his umbilical cord”. Yeah she pretty much rang us up quick fast and in a hurry and tried to apologize.
When I was your age
One day I was doing my normal routine of dropping my kids off at daycare before heading to work. That day I was decked out in dress pants and a cute blouse. That day my youngest son’s teacher decided to tell me that she used to be “jazzy” and well dressed like me when she was my age.
My son’s teacher continued to say that once she reached her thirties she got so bogged down with keeping her self looking good because of her kids. I already knew what she was probably thinking-I’m a teen mom. I politely asked his teacher how old she thought I was, and sure enough she said 18. One thing came to mind, I must be a pretty well off teen because our child care bill is definitely a mortgage. It blew her mind when I told her I was in my thirties. Let’s just say that after that day her “jazzy” level went up.
One beautiful summer day my husband and I took a stroll in the mall. My hubby was carrying one of those back pack diaper bags. I was pushing the stroller. We went into an electronic store and saw some type of new device that my husband thought was cool. I told my husband that it would look good in his man-cave. The sales person laughed and said “A man cave? How cute”. My husband asked her what she meant and she replied “Aren’t you a little too young for a man cave?” We laughed so hard.
I honestly used to let it bother me. One day my husband said what if people were mistaking you for their grandmother, would that make you feel better? Of course not. I’ve since embraced my “teen mom” look and if you’re in this boat with me I encourage you to do the same.
Have you ever been mistaken for a teen parent? Share your story below.