The first time we bought an SUV (or, technically, a crossover, if you want to be technical), the strangest thing happened. When I drove it I began feeling like “a real mom.”


I don’t know. I don’t know what A REAL MOM is, you guys. But when I drove my mom car? I felt like one.

We bought it not long before I quit my full-time job to stay home with our oldest daughter. My identity was all up in the air during that season, and in hindsight I realize I was grasping at every straw that might put my new existence into words I could understand. Wearing T-shirts instead of button-ups? Running errands instead of PowerPoint presentations? Planning play dates instead of staff meetings? It all added up to stay-at-home mom and yet it wasn’t something I could reconcile with my own life, with my own reality.

For some reason, though, driving my preschooler around in that car did the trick. Behind that wheel, I knew who I was, who I’d become.

Do NOT get me wrong. Every mom is a “real” mom, and no car or wardrobe or employment status changes that one way or another. I was no more a real mom when I stayed home than when I worked full-time. And I was no more a real mom when I drove a small SUV than when I drove a sporty sedan. But there for a while, I was so unsure of who I was that I looked everywhere for explanations and validation.

I’m seven years into my life-after-office and quasi-comfortable in my current arrangement as part-time work-from-home mom and part-time stay-at-home mom. It does, as you can see, involve a lot of hyphens and in-between, but I’ve had time to adjust to the messiness this set-up brings. However, that doesn’t stop me from occasionally searching for ways to feel more comfortable and confident in my skin or from focusing on the outward appearance of other roles I want to play and the identity I want to own.

I’m a little bit like Spider-Man that way.

To read about how I’m JUST LIKE a teenaged superhero, join me at (in)courage.


This post may be linked to these amazing carnivals and link parties.

Wonder how you can get this print for free?

It's super easy! Just enter your name and email address to subscribe and I'll send it right to you.

Sweet! Just confirm with the email you just received, and you're all set. Easy peasy.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This