I was never going to be that mom. You know, the one who drives her kids to school in her faded flowery cotton bathrobe and used-to-be-white terrycloth slippers with a hole in the toe…the one who ‘runs to the store for one quick item’ with curlers in her hair, hiding them under a sheer pink scarf…the one who wears stretchy-waist jeans pulled way up over her belly-button…the one who always says something nerdy like, “Was that a nice way to talk to your friend? I don’t think Jesus would be smiling down on you right now.” You know…that mom. The mom who is totally not “with it.” My mom.
Yesterday, however, I was smacked in the face with the realization that I may be, indeed, that mom. Not exactly the mom described above—I have never driven my son to school in a bathrobe, my slippers are not made out of terrycloth—although they do have a hole in the big toe—I do not wear curlers in my hair, nor do I run to the store for anything—my husband usually takes care of that—and I do not wear my jeans over my belly-button—I find that the low cut jeans are much more comfortable, letting my tummy sort of ooze out over the top of the non-elastic waistband.
I do remember pontificating once or twice about what would Jesus do and treating friends with respect, blah, blah, blah, but it didn’t sound nearly so nerdy coming from me. It sounded…wise.
Anyway, back to yesterday. I was in the kitchen, slaving over a hot stove. (And yes, boiling water for the roast-beef-and-gravy-in-a-bag, zapping the fully-cooked-rice-pilaf in the microwave, popping open the can of biscuits and strategically placing them on a cookie sheet, and grabbing a handful of salad out of the bag and depositing it into individual bowls does count as ‘slaving’ over dinner.)
My just-turned-teenager son was in the family room talking on the phone to his BFF, Justin. (See how hip I am? I know that BFF means Best Friends Forever. Except, I think that might just be a girls’ term—I’m not so sure guys have BFF’s.)
So, I overheard—I was not eavesdropping, I truly did overhear, once I turned the stove fan off—a one-sided conversation that went something like this…
“No way. That’s so bad.”
“Dude. That’s the bomb.”
“That’s totally sick.”
Wondering what horrific event had happened to Justin, I jumped into action as the microwave, stovetop, and oven buzzers all went off within seconds of each other. Taking a moment to congratulate myself on impeccable timing—that’s always my goal, to see if I can get all the pre-packaged food warm at the same time—I sliced open the bag of meat and gravy and hollered ‘grub’s on.’ (That sounds much more cool than ‘dinner’s ready.’)
My son ended his conversation and came whistling into the kitchen, followed by my husband and the dog. I dished the food straight from the stove—no sense dirtying additional serving bowls—and set the plates on the table. As we joined hands to give thanks to God, I asked my husband if I could pray this time.
“Dear Lord, We thank you for this food and ask that you bless it to nourish and strengthen our bodies. And please be with Justin in whatever he is going through. Amen.”
“What’s with Justin?” My husband reached to the counter behind him for a biscuit—straight off the pan.
I looked sheepishly at my son. “Sorry, Troy, I overheard you talking to Justin, and I know something bad happened.”
“What are you talking about, Mom?”
“You said something was bad, and something about a bomb, and that somebody is sick. Is Justin’s cousin in Iraq okay? Where was the bomb? And who’s sick?”
Troy rolled his eyes and gave me ‘the look.’ I thought only moms have ‘the look,’ but he inherited one the day he turned thirteen.
“Justin got an iPhone for his birthday, Mom. ‘Bad,’ ‘the bomb,’ and ‘sick,’ mean it’s really, really good. Like, totally awesome? Super cool? Neato? Or whatever it is you say.”
“Oh, so ‘bad’ is good?”
Troy just gave me ‘the look.’
“So does that mean good is bad?”
More of ‘the look.’
My eyes pleaded with my husband for help. He just shrugged and grabbed another biscuit. I shrugged and attacked my pre-packaged salad.
So there you have it. I am officially ‘not cool’…I am that mom.
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