Top Ten Crap Things about Being An Old Mom
1. Other people. You will get eyeballs on you. When they ask “Aw, are you her grandma?” just smile and say, ‘No, I’m just her really old mom.” That will: a) shut them up, b) scare them off or c) get you a compliment/apology. Bonus, d) they will think twice before asking that question of anyone else ever again! You’re welcome.
2. Font sizes. Your kid’s sick, you’re tired and stressed and you can’t find your cheaters when reading dosing directions on baby meds. The font size is only legible to toddlers, who cannot read yet. Keep Poison Control on speed dial. You’re welcome again.
3. When your kid’s in their twenties you’ll be officially old, which is the best incentive to take exemplary care of oneself starting right now. Red wine is a superfood, right?
4. Menopause and mothering. It’s going to be hard on your husband. There are options other than sweaty rages and peanut butter binges. See Night Sweats & Night Feedings?
5. Your parents are older too. They won’t be able to babysit as actively for your kid. But my grandparents had dentures in their forties… so it’s a toss up.
6. Font sizes. C’mon Children’s Book Publishers! Parents need to be able to read in dim, sleep-inducing light at all hours and children learn to read from your books. Font it 18 or up. Ink’s not that pricey!
7. Curiosity. Especially if your child is a different race. While educating folks about adoption is awesome, we don’t want to be asked “Why didn’t her real mother want her?” in front of our child. See Race Relations or Advice Without Judgment for information about educating others about transracial adoption!
8. You will be old enough to be the parent of many of the other parents at preschool, elementary school and beyond. But they are (almost) all great people, because they were raised by hippies, or hippie-adjacent type people.
9. People will tell you, ‘When I’m your age, I hope I’m like you.’ Which is a compliment, but it’s also payback for all the times you said that to older wiser people when you were a young, snot-nosed git.
10. Being old is hard. Even if you firmly believe age is just a number, your fifties are the ‘warning years’. Two glasses of wine takes more recovery time than it did when you were 30.
Top Ten Great Things About Being An Old Mom
1. You’ve done all your clubbing/partying/road-tripping. You’re thrilled for a great reason to stay home.
2. You’re more patient, experienced and empathetic. You already know how to handle crazy people, so kids are relatively easy to deal with.
3. If you were raised in the 60s, or parts of the 70s: as long as you don’t parent like your parents did, you’re doing an incredible job.
4. Since you survived your twenties, thirties, forties and childbirth or adoption, you know how not to sweat the small stuff. Watching your kid freak out over truly small stuff won’t freak you out.
5. If you have older nieces and nephews, you’ve already done tons of pinchhit parenting, so you have experience, and your older nieces and nephews will love caring for your kid.
6. Hand me downs. We have clothes lined up until she is seven.
7. When you do get to sleep, it will be well-earned, deep & profound.
8. You will feel younger just chasing them around. All their physical energy will rub off on you. Until it doesn’t.
9. Showing them (and young parents who just don’t know) the truly violent, funny, racist and sexist Bugs and Mickey Mouse cartoons of your childhood.
10. Children organize your lives. What’s truly important becomes infinitely clear. To care for someone who not only needs you but requires you is a great antidote for the crazy boss who likes to make you think they can’t really function without you.