My Tween Daughter Doesn't See How Cool I Am

by Darcy Perdu
Originally Published: 

Lately, I feel my tween daughter finds me…archaic.

When I ask her to take a sweater with her to school, she rolls her eyes indulgently and smiles, shoving a sweater in her backpack, leaving me with the distinct feeling that it’s merely a pacifying gesture.

When I ask her to call her friend to arrange carpool pick-up time, she grins, shakes her head at this old-fashioned notion of calling and fires off a quick text.

When I get excited that she wants to borrow something from my youth that she found buried in my closet, I soon realize the outfit I once wore so earnestly is the same outfit she’s planning to wear ironically.

When I promote good manners by advising her, “Never do anything that you’d be embarrassed for everyone to see on the front page of the newspaper,” she looks at me blankly, then nods kindly and says, “Oh, you mean don’t do anything you wouldn’t want to pop up on everyone’s Instagram account?”

When we goof around, I often hit her in the face with a pillow and yell, “Makeup!” She always giggles, but recently asked, “Why do you always say that?” She had no idea that’s what old-time movie directors yelled when they wanted the makeup crew to powder puff the actors’ faces. When I try to explain, she nods soothingly, like “There, there, dear, it’s all right for you to reminisce about the good old days.”

Honestly, she makes me feel positively quaint.

But I’m not sitting here in white gloves and a pillbox hat. I’m not rocking in a chair covered by a quilt I crocheted myself with the help of seven cats. I’m not rocking mom jeans.

Why does she think I’m a sweet old relic? Maybe I’ll ask her when we go out today.

“Omigod, Mom! Are you wearing a fanny pack?” she asks.

“No, no!” I sputter. “It’s a little fabric pouch for your money that you clip to your belt loop.” I display it proudly. “It’s called a Hip Clip!”

“Oh, Mom,” she says, looping her arm through mine. “You are adorable!”

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