‘But you ARE a Mom,’ the car salesman said to me with a confused look on his face.
‘Yeah, but I’m not a minivan Mom,’ I said back to him.
And even though I recommitted, knowing that I was in fact NOT a minivan Mom, here I sit with a minivan sitting on my driveway.
While I know how privileged this all sounds, I’ve had this conversation with so many Moms, so I know I’m not alone when I say that I never wanted to or expected to drive a minivan.
The Momness of this reality has hit me like a ton of bricks. It’s even sent me into a tailspin of identity and a tiny bit of a depression.
Here’s the deal – getting this minivan was the most practical and economic choice for my family. That being said, and all rational perspective aside, my ego is fighting back HARD.
What an interesting lesson it’s been for me to learn to see that this material object, which I am actually grateful for, is putting me in a place where I question things like ‘who the heck am I now?’
When I really began to dive deeper into the tailspin of negative space this gift of affordable transportation triggered me into, I realized that I always cared about what car I drove and how ridiculous this actually is.
From my very first car, I identified a certain sense of acceptance based on what kind of car I was in. Lost on me at all times of transportation transition was the sense of gratitude I could have had for being able to afford a car and fuel for it. Lost on me at all times were the blessings of feeling safe and secure inside these machines that got me from where I was to where I needed to be. Lost on me at all times, with this transition hitting the hardest, is the importance of not what the exterior looks like, but WHO resides inside the four wheels and the memories we can make during these times together.
My connection to what I drive is more dear to my ego than I’d ever like to admit. And for all the times I have personally and publically declared ‘I am not a minivan Mom,’ I became one overnight.
So here I sit, at an interesting crossroads, so dearly wanting to hang on to my cool and also horrified that this grip of ego is having on me.
Does the car I drive really speak volumes about what type of mother I am? Does the car we choose as a family really make me lose my past and the story I’ve have weaved for myself on acceptance?
The answer to these questions are undoubtedly no. The car I drive doesn’t make my friends accept me more or less. It doesn’t speak about what type of mother I am. And it definitely does not negate all the ‘coolness’ I believe I have worked hard to forge as an individual.
My biggest lesson thus far has been a deliberate shift toward gratitude. For all the loss my ego is convincing me I am experiencing, gratitude shows me the truth. The truth is that my family can afford safe transportation. The truth is that now I have a car with ample space for all of my children and our needs. And the truth is that even though it has stung, no one gives a shit about what kind of car I drive, and I don’t need to either.
I invite you to join me on a journey of self reflection, growth, mindfulness, and all the meltdowns in between in my online community, The Mindful Mom Revolution.