From MILF to Cute

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I went to a concert with my daughter a few weeks ago. Her friendship with the lead guitarist snagged us a spot right up front with her other friends and all of us shook and swayed to the very good rhythms.

After more than a year inside during the pandemic, it felt good to be out and listening to live music and meeting my daughter’s friends. I had a blast.

Later, I was reliving the music in my head when my daughter said, “My friends told me they think you’re really cute.”

The music in my head stopped with a scratch.

“Cute? They thought I was cute?”

I remember back when she was in high school, she joked that her male friends thought I was a MILF. Not that I ever WOULD, but I liked being thought of as someone they would LF.

But, cute? Cute is something you call a little old lady. Someone with gray hair and apple cheeks.

Cute is what you call someone when you want to desexualize someone completely. I don’t want to be cute. I want to be sexy, hot, fierce. Not cute. Cute is for kittens, not cougars.

I know there are phases of a woman’s life. Maiden, mother, crone. A crone, usually a woman in her 50s who is past menopause, is associated with wisdom in many cultures. Our country’s folklore has made crones disagreeable and malicious. Sinister, even.

“Mom, you’re making too much of this. Don’t you think it would be creepy if my friends thought you were hot?”

No. No, I do not.

But then, I thought, how would I feel if MY friends thought my daughter were hot? Ew, really creepy. There are only certain ways my friends can describe my daughter’s body: beautiful, fit, attractive. Not hot.

I am fighting this crone stage. I have learned much, so there is a certain amount of wisdom. But I am far from done learning, just like I am far from done living and being sexy. So, what am I? Somewhere between MILF and Crone, but, sorry, I am not cute.

I recently read an article that advocated for a new archetype now that women are living longer. Something between Mother and Crone.

She advocates for “Queen.”

She says, “The queen can be seen as the later phase of the mother archetype. She is a woman owning her own power and authority within herself and in the world. If she had children they are now older allowing her greater focus on her other creations. This is a woman negotiating her responsibility and power and reveling in all that she has mastered and accomplished. She has much to teach and remains actively engaged in society, either directly or through her teachings. She is renegotiating the all encompassing giving of the mother and creating clearer boundaries around herself, her time and her expenditure of energies. She reaps the benefits personally of all she has done and directs more of her power and attention to her own needs and creations. This can be a powerful personal, spiritual, and political stage of her life.”

I love it. I am still a mother and will always mother my daughter. But I am past the years of daily hand-holding. And I am not a Crone yet.

I, my friends, am a Queen. I can live with that.

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