You know those moms who look totally put together at school drop-off? The ones who are wearing coordinated, stylish outfits, with blow-dried hair and lip gloss? The ones wearing wedge heels at the playground; I repeat, heels at the playground, for the love of god?
Don’t you hate those women? I mean, how much time do they have on their hands anyway? Who has time to doll themselves up like that for school drop-off? Can they hear their children crying for them over the sound of the blow dryer?
I have a confession to make: I am one of those moms.
That’s right; every morning when I drop my kids off at school my hair is done, my makeup is on, and not only is my outfit cute and coordinated and complete with jewelry, but my bra matches my panties too. It doesn’t matter if I have a meeting later, if I’m going to the grocery store, or if I’m just going to the dog park, I go through the same beauty routine every single day. Generally speaking, I don't leave the house without makeup and the single time I did when I dropped the kids off at school, I had five people ask me if I was ill.
I have always been a morning person as well as a person who thrives on routine, and I do not feel truly ready for my day until I have showered and put on my makeup. In fact, without my daily beauty routine, which begins with shaving, plucking, and moisturizing and ends with blow-drying, lip-glossing and jewelry, I feel a bit lost. I am as high-maintenance as Sally Albright, and I'm happy this way.
I’m a pulled-together mom, and I own it. I care what I look like, because it affects how I feel about myself. When I look good, I feel good, for better or for worse. I recognize not everyone feels this way, but hey, you do you, and I'll do me, right?
Evidently, if social media and Buzzfeed lists are any indication, I am one of the most-hated types of moms, right after the Know-It-All Mom and the Mom Who Brings Her Contagious Child Everywhere.
Years ago, I was at a play group, and one of the mothers very passive-aggressively said that she didn’t even have time to brush her teeth, let alone put on makeup, and the mothers who did so must be neglecting their children in some way. She looked right at me when she said it, and I excused myself to go check on my poor neglected children.
Aren't we all over this already, judging women for what they're wearing or what they look like? Haven't we moved on from this yet? We're damned if we do and we're damned if we don't. We're slovenly if we wear yesterday's yoga pants and we're neglectful if we put on mascara.
Here's a question: why do we even have lists of most-hated mothers? How does snarking about other mothers and the way they look make the world a better place? Spoiler alert: it doesn't.
Something that we all try to teach our children is that it's what's inside that counts, but maybe we need to teach ourselves that lesson as well. Why do we feel the need to disparage a woman for the way she presents herself to the world? We don't know what's going on behind the scenes. The pulled-together mom might have slicked on some lipstick in an effort to hide the fact that she was up all night with a sick child, and the mom with sweatpants covered in dog hair might be on the way to her triathalon training.
Every time we cut down another woman, we all get weaker. Instead of bringing ourselves down, let's lift each other up. Let's support one another; remember, we are all in this together, whether we show up at drop-off in pajamas or heels.