Years ago I bought my dream car… a Jeep Wrangler. I was 25 years old and gainfully employed. I did not care what my hair looked like after I exited the top-down vehicle. I did not care that it had plastic, zipper windows that needed my very thick Franklin Planner shoved in between the door and the unzipped window, so the window would stay inside of the car as I sped through town.
I cared that I finally bought my dream car that happened to be super fun. I had wanted one for a while, even though it made no sense… I bought it during a cold Chicago winter. I had a perfectly good car on which I was still making payments. The gas mileage was terrible… 13 miles per gallon. I bought the first one I saw in the lot and it was white, showed a lot of dirt. Those logical arguments did not stop me or even slow me down. This car screamed FUN and CARE FREE and I wanted in!
Of course this car was every bit fun and carefree as you might imagine. I was not very surprised by this fact. What DID surprise me, though, is the secret Wrangler wave between all Wrangler owners.
((In case you don’t know, Jeep Wrangler drivers have a very specific wave, when passing other Wrangler drivers. You simply take two fingers (index and middle) of the hand that is on the steering wheel and lift them straight up, while you nod to the other driver. Sound a tad silly…. It wasn’t.
It was as if I all of a sudden became part of this super secretive and cool club because we all shared a similar passion and love for this car. We understood the trials of plastic windows, or unexpectedly coming upon rain, and having to pull over to man handle the soft top and enclose your car, quickly! We knew the trials of having to dress very warmly if we drove in cold winter months because the temperature outside of this car quickly infiltrated the inside of this car. The women could all empathize with how to gracefully board the thing, in a skirt, properly using the running boards.
Jeep Wrangler owners also knew the thrill of a sunny and 80 degree day, the wind blowing through your hair, whether you were going 25 or 65mph. We knew we could get through deep snow without major problems and we looked forward to having our music blaring, spilling out of our car at stop lights, while smiling at others while we jammed to the beat.
When we saw other Wrangler drivers, we knew that we understood the commonalities that brought us together. We felt an immediate respect and affection for others who experience the same thing as we did with this machine!
Over the years, I see that other groups have similar waves. Ever see Harley owners wave at each other, (two fingers, pointing towards the road, diagonally, when they pass each other)? Bus drivers? Fire trucks? Delivery trucks?
Well….wouldn’t it be nice if us Moms had a wave?
I would do almost anything, to have a wave, nod, outright cheer or facial expression that was universally known as “Mom, I am not judging you, you are doing a good job, don’t second guess yourself or sell yourself short. We are in this motherhood thing together.”
Imagine, you are at Target and you see a Mom with a toddler in an outright screaming and crying fit. The Mom looks embarrassed, frustrated and exhausted, as if she just wants to give up. Or you see a Mom that seem to have it all together but she just found out that her oldest daughter, who just went away to college, is pregnant.
We see these women, every day. We ARE these women. I dream of the day that us Moms, start a secret gesture, that shows supports, respect and encouragement for each other.
Until then… when you come across a women who you think could use a little encouragement, say something to her! SOMETHING to tell her that she is doing just fine, that you dare not judge her, and to keep her head up, that she is not alone and that we are all in this together!
Universally, as Moms, we have ups and downs, challenges and achievements. Let’s not judge but support and let each other know, we really are in this together… just like those fun Jeep Wranglers owners.
PS- I sold my Wrangler when my hubby and I were getting married. I drove a Dodge Durango after that. And for the first few weeks of driving that large SUV, I used to wave at Jeep Wrangler drivers because I forgot that I was no longer in my Jeep. No one waved back at me. 🙂