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October 14, 2001: Old beyond my years

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I made the daily trek to Starbucks for breakfast this morning (which we really shouldn't be doing every day, but since the one in town *finally* started to carry the stuff I like, I just can't help myself). I was helped by a rather awkward teenage boy - probably mid-high-school age, and fairly new to the job if I was guessing correctly. I handed him my check card, and as he checked my ID he paused and looked from the card to me. And then came something I most certainly wasn't expecting.

"Are you Josh's mom?" he asked. Further comments indicated that the Josh in question actually was old enough to *work* there at the shop.

I ought to point out right about now that I look young for my age (I'm 32). Never in my entire life has anyone *ever* guessed that I'm as old as I am - they're usually off by at least 3 or 4 years. Currently I am usually mistaken for someone in their late twenties, and I've certainly never before been mistaken for someone who is old enough to be the mother of a teenage boy.

I suppose I ought to have been insulted, but it was so unexpected that all I could do shake my head and try not to laugh. It was the last name that made him ask, he said, since it was the same, but even so!

I remember the shock of being called 'Ma'am' when first working at the department store, and how bizarre it was when customers would ask me how old my children were (I was barely 18 at the time, but I guess they figured that if I worked in the children's department, that meant I had 'em. Go figure). And I'm still trying to get the hang of having a title that now has a 'Mrs.' in front of it instead of a 'Miss', but the thing is, these are all part of working jobs that are slightly more grownup than flipping burgers, or getting married.

But I'm not sure I'm ready to have people think I could be the mother of teenagers. I'm not sure I'll ever be ready for that (grin).

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