Ten years ago, I would've sworn up and down that I would never, ever, EVER do what I did today.
This morning, my new Chacos arrived. I tore open the box, fiddled with the weird straps and put them on.
I own a pair of GD Chacos.
The most comfortable, practical pair of sandals on the market. Podiatrist approved. At least they're not Keens... sorry if you love your Keens. Honestly, I'm probably only eight years away from buying a pair of Keens.
I bought the Chacos for camping/outdoor purposes, but I just tried them on and am kinda like... these are sort of cute (?) They're kinda in style, right? Like how fashion Birkenstocks and Tevas are back. I mean, you'll probably see me out on the town in these suckers, while my tent stays all wrapped up in my basement.
During my junior year of college, I remember asking for a dust buster and crockpot for Christmas, simultaneously thinking to myself, what practical things to own/holy shit I am old! But the Chacos are on a whole new level.
It's official: I am momming out. And I'm not even a mom.
Before anyone gets all offended (what do you have against moms, Molly?!), I'd like to offer a quick back story on where the term "momming out" came from.
Shortly after college, I was hanging out with a few girl friends discussing a mutual friend who "mommed out" before her time. She was 23, worked full-time in some boring office, wore sensible shoes, donned one piece swimsuits and was far too responsible.
Now, come on. You only get to be 23 once, and I can confidently say no 23-year-old needs to be so serious all the time. Even if they are actually a mom (for the record, my friend was definitely not a mom). Momming out meant not embracing your youth! Like Nora Ephron said,
As a young grasshopper, I feared momming out meant giving up. However, as my friends and I have gotten on in years (and many of us are actual moms), momming out has become kind of a great thing. Here are the 10 ways I've caught myself momming out and loving it.
1. I love wearing comfortable clothes.
Don't worry, I'm not talking muumuus here. Or am I?
Yesterday, I went to a sports medicine doctor to talk about my chronic ankle pain (which just makes me sound old... but I AM NOT OLD). She asked if I wear a lot of heels. And I just laughed, because this is the first time I didn't lie to a doctor about my lifestyle. Oh, yes, I only have about three drinks a week, ma'am.
Of course I don't wear heels a lot! Can't you see I'm momming out over here?!
I really try to not look frumpy, but as far as my wardrobe goes, I don't buy my jeans too tight, heels too high, dresses too snug or sweaters too itchy. I buy clothes that fit, are practical and make me feel good. Sure, they might not be the trendiest things on the market, but since culottes are apparently back in, I think I'm fine with that.
Also, remember earlier today when I bought Chacos?
2. I can't remember the last time I went out.
I'm not even saying that to be cute.
I've been out for dinner. I've met friends for drinks. And I've done it in non-schlubby outfits. But the last time I got dolled up and went bar hopping? Literally couldn't even wager a guess. Definitely some time in the last two years. Probably.
This doesn't mean I'm not having fun. I have fun ALL OF THE TIME. I just do it at a friend's house or around our backyard fire pit. Sometimes fun is a walk around Lake of the Isles with a friend.
3. I don't know who Lucy Hale/Bella Thorne are & I don't care.
Do you remember been a tween and your parents were all, "Who's Andrew Keegan?" and you were like, "Duh, Mom and Dad! You don't know anything!"
Whelp, I don't even have kids yet, and that's me. One Direction? Barely know anything about them. I honestly had never heard the T. Swift song, Dear John until last summer (!) And you know what? I don't care! Who has time to keep tabs on that stuff when there's books to read, dogs to walk, and Game of Thrones to binge on?
PS Did you know Andrew Keegan started a cult... er.... religion? True story!
4. The best weekend things happen before noon.
Ten years ago (hell, four years ago), I used to do a lot before noon... like stumble home at 2 am, the eat pizza and talk on my porch 'til 4 am. Don't get me wrong, it was super fun. But ever since I turned... hmmm... 28 (?), my hangovers rage like Mel Gibson on a bender.
Yoga, farmers markets, brunch, coffee, crossword puzzles, trips to Home Depot... dude, you can get so much done before noon if you're up by 7:30 am!
5. I stopped doing things I don't like.
I used to say I'm down for whatevs-- concerts, parties, outings. Now, I am a little more selective. I don't usually go to things I don't want to go to. Even if it just means I'll be staying home and doing something boring, like watching a movie with my dog.
6. I actually had a conversation with my husband about the virtues of minivans.
On our slightly crazy road trip to Vermont, Josh and I spent a good half an hour talking about the rise (the late 80s!), then fall (the late 90s/aka SUV time), then re-rise of the minivan (now). SUV blowback seems like it's not slowing down anytime soon, plus minivans are easier to deal with. Better gas mileage, and those sliding doors? Brilliant!
All this said, my personal preference is still a station wagon. Which is totally cooler than a minivan, but still 100-percent momming out.
7. I know my dancing and singing is kind of embarrassing & that's what I like about it.
You should just see me getting down to Missy Elliot in my kitchen, dancing with my dog or pseudo booty shaking on my guy. It's embarrassing in a very mom kind of way. But really fun.
8. As if I ever watch the Tonight Show when it's on.
I've never watched the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon when it's actually on. Same goes for SNL. I do watch a lot of clips the next day online. Who can stay up that late?!
9. I get excited about recipes.
What used to excite me? Discovering a new band. What excites me now? Stuff like finding this Nom Nom Paleo Grilled Green Chicken recipe!
Although I will say I was thrilled to learn of Sturgill Simpson's existence.
10. I cut off all my hair & I love it.
There's people out there who might say cutting off all your hair = momming out. But you know what? I just think my hair looks better this way.
As it turns out, momming out is about letting yourself go. And no, not in a giving up kind of way. It's about growing up, doing what makes you laugh, figuring out what fulfills you. Momming out means not feeling the need to teeter around in five-inch heels to prove jut how sexy you are. Sexy means feeling comfortable in your own skin and owning what works for you. Even if it's a pair of Chacos.
* * *
How do you mom out? Even if you're not a mom (even if you're a guy... you can definitely dad out!), share in the comments. Other ways I totally mom out? I buy practical bras that fit, and there's momming out aaaaaalllll over the lessons I learned in 2014.