I swore, along with most pre-kid parents that I would never, ever get a mini-van when I had kids; that I would get back to MY life once my baby was born (said when pregnant with my first) and I wouldn’t live in yoga pants which are just one step up from “mom-jeans”, or a step down whichever way you look at it.
Today, I drive a mini-van, live a life exactly 180 degrees from my life pre-kids and pretty much live in yoga pants but actually do yoga so most days the attire is justified.
Not too long ago, driving my mini-van, I’d laugh to myself at all the parents driving their cars with the infamous “Proud Parent of a Terrific Kid” bumper sticker. Almost every mini-van has one, so I’d think to myself, “How is your kid unique or anymore terrific than the next?” It seemed so bland, so generic, so overdone. And of course, the bumper sticker was just below the stick figure family with the stick dog to boot.
Two weeks ago, on the heels of my daughter’s misbehavior, we got a letter from school stating that she was chosen for the month of January as her class’ Terrific Kid recognizing students “who are working to the best of their ability to improve academic performance, behavior and relationships with peers.” It’s a template letter and written “To Parent” but still, I was beaming and so very proud of my girl. She has her kid struggles but she IS a terrific kid. I spent every day since receiving that letter addressing her as such. “Good morning my terrific kid!”, “Hey terrific kid, how was school?” “Good night my terrific kid, sweet dreams”….what was once so generic and mass-produced all of a sudden was so very special once it became our own.
And now… now that I am the parent of a school-wide recognized Terrific Kid, I proudly wear the badge of honor, because in truth, no mini-van is complete without one.
My sister said when I told her I’d be receiving the “Terrific Kid” bumper sticker at the award presentation that, “It’s the gateway drug of bumper stickers.”
I guess it’s time to start shopping for my stick figure family.