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I had never really thought much about my age until I looked
around my daughter's pre-school and noticed I was probably the oldest mom on
campus. Overnight, it seemed like I had
gone from being just another mom at school to being Matthew McConaughey in
"Dazed And Confused"; his character just kept hanging out long after he'd
graduated high school.
Honestly, I didn't really mind being the oldest mom at preschool
until I overheard one mom whisper to another, "She's 40!" as if aging was
contagious and I had the disease. Up until that point I'd tried to blend in and
pretend like I, too, followed Kylie Jenner on SnapChat and took my children to
Coachella (Instagramming the entire weekend, naturally.)
But there it was, the reason jaws were dropping. It wasn't just that I was
older. It's that I wasn't a millennial.
See, when you're not one of them, a millennial, that is, it's hard to disguise
the fact that you're different. I don't
want to take myself to an outdoor music festival, much less take my kids. I don't think "YouTube Personality" should
be a college major. And I remember when the Spice Girls were a joke girl band
from England and not considered classic rock.
But since I want my daughter to have friends, I'm trying to
fit in with the young moms at school. I
may be a Gen-X Mom, but I'm determined to fit in with the Gen-Me millennial
moms. Here's what I think it'll take.
1. You are your own brand.
to use the word brand a lot, but only in relation to themselves. Millennials see themselves as a brand and
their children an extension of it. So if you want to fit in with the young moms
at school, make sure you stay "on brand" and that your kids do, too. That means no tantrums, kids. We'd hate to ruin
our Instagram photo of the day with all those tears!
Yes, you can totally list how many followers you have on your child's private school kindergarten application.
The term gram from a millennial means Instagram, not a gram of whatever you
dabbled in in college.
3. Talk about food, just don't eat it.
Millennial moms like to talk about what their children are eating, or what
they're not, to be exact. That's because a millennial mom wouldn't dare feed her
child something as unhealthy (and delicious) as Cheetos. She'd have homemade
kale chips on hand with salt-free salt to reduce her little one's sodium intake.
So if you're going to invite a millennial mom and her spawn over for
a play date, make sure the snacks are homemade, natural and probably
Millennial moms are all about me-time. If
you fall in with a crew of young moms at school, expect endless mom's nights
out, regular girl's weekends away and tons of social media posts of the tribe
together so that everyone who isn't part of the tribe knows they weren't
5. Everything is curated.
have been creating dream boards for most of their lives. Getting married and
having children provides a great opportunity to make those dream boards a
reality. So if you want to truly be a millennial mom, you must carefully curate everything in your life—from your uncurated school drop off look to the theme
of your toddler's birthday party, which you will have shared on Pinterest
before the party's end.
A millennial mom is never alone as long as she has her phone.
7. Life is one big Instagram post.
wacky millennials love to document everything from their dinner to their child's
bedhead. And for moms of particularly adorable babies, it's totally
appropriate to get your child his or her own Instagram account. Children can be their own brand, too.
8. It's all about the followers.
to be that the Queen Bee or the Parent Association President ruled the school.
But for millennials, the most popular mom is the gal with the most
followers. And yes, you can totally list
how many followers you have on your child's private school kindergarten
If you're going to hang out with the young
mom tribe at school, be prepared to get an entirely different set of cultural
references because those girls don't know from a Carrie Bradshaw reference.
They think Tina Fey is the funny lady who hosted the Golden Globes, not the
first female head writer of "SNL." And forget about your Madonna references.
The millennials are all about Taylor. Eek.