Still Working on My Inner Cool thumbnail

Still Working on My Inner Cool

3 Things by Tracy Beckerman, Lost in Suburbia

3 Things by Tracy Beckerman, Lost in Suburbia


My new book is called, Lost in Suburbia: A Momoir: How I Got Pregnant, Lost Myself, and Got My Cool Back in the New Jersey Suburbs.

It’s a great title, but the truth is:

I’m still not cool.

Yes, there is “outer cool,” which I kind of achieved through a cute, super short haircut, some rocking new clothes, and a couple of tattoos. But the cool I’m talking about is “inner cool.”  Inner cool is about feeling confident and self-assured, even when strangers mock your food purchases on the supermarket checkout line by telling you that childhood obesity is the number one problem in America.

Or when people question your parenting skills while your kids throw an all out hairy fit on the floor of Target and you laugh.

And when one of your kids threatens to run away — and you actually think about how much less laundry this will mean for you.

Does this make me a bad mother? Nah.

Does it make me a slightly insecure one? Maybe.

But how many of us are truly confident about our mothering skills? How many of us are sure that we are raising our kids perfectly? How many of us are willing to put on a bikini after having kids and strut our stuff on the beach without reservation?  (True, that last one doesn’t have to do with parenting, but I’m still not cool with it!)

The point is, like so many other moms, I’m still working on my inner cool, and probably will be for as long as I’m a mom, which, now that I have kids, is forever.

Fortunately, I have two small people who don’t mind at all that I’m not a perfect mom, as long as I just love them and do the best I can.

And that’s pretty cool.


As someone who is laundry challenged (I once destroyed a dozen pair of my son’s socks in one shot with too much bleach), dinner challenged (I have killed two ovens in two years), and house-keeping challenged (while vacuuming the living room, I sucked the window treatments into the Hoover and destroyed both the curtains and the vacuum) — I’m actually afraid to offer any tips here for fear that someone might actually take my advice and blow up their house.

However, I’m pretty confident about this one.

This tip (that I got from a friend) not only works and will help reduce your workload — but it also won’t cause any of your appliances to spontaneously combust.

I combine two chores in one — washing my dishes and washing my laundry — by using the top rack for baseball caps, sports gear (shin guards, etc.) and sometimes sneakers. But in full disclosure, I don’t usually do the dishes at the same time as the sneakers.


My book is all about how I went from a cool city chick to a tragically uncool suburban mom in the blink of an eye — and what I did to get my groove back.

Although I loved being a mom, I struggled with the loss of identity I had after quitting my job to stay home with my kids. The lowest point in my descent into uncoolness was the day I got stopped by a cop while I was driving in my ducky bathrobe.

Although that was a tough time for me, I have since decided that my bathrobe is like a badge of an honor for making it through those early parenting days with my sanity intact.  I’m so proud of my bathrobe, in fact, that I gave one to both Hoda and Kathie Lee when I was on The Today Show a week ago to promote my book.


Now you, TOO, can get your own ducky bathrobe. It’s made by Aegean Apparel and you can get one in hot pink in either full length or knee length here.


Contributor: Tracy from Lost in Suburbia
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Check out her books: Lost in Suburbia: A Momoir: How I Got Pregnant, Lost Myself, and Got My Cool Back in the New Jersey Suburbs and Rebel Without a Minivan: observations on life in the ‘burbs.