The Minivan: Loser Cruiser or Swagger Wagon?


How one woman's upgrade to minivan affects her sense of self.

Six weeks ago, I was cruising through my happily-ever-after in a mid-size SUV. I had one foot planted in soccer mom territory, the other firmly in "I’m still the cool chick I was before I had kids" land. My vehicle reflected this—it was practical enough to cart my two children wherever they needed to go, and the third row even allowed for the ultimate mom activity: the car pool. But once the small people were safely deposited at their adult-supervised destination, my ride could transport me to whatever adult function I was attending without shouting "Hey! My life is run by munchkins!"

But five weeks and three days ago came the news that the stork had us on his spring delivery schedule. This delivery, courtesy of a whole bottle of Chardonnay on date night, was welcome but unexpected, and we had to adjust quickly. While I was re-evaluating my approach to fall fashion, my husband was taking a hard look at my car. And as I stood examining my expanding waistline in the mirror one day, he came in and—without even a feeble attempt to soften the blow—said, "I think you're going to need a mini-van." 4 Unplanned Pregnancy Tips Via Kourtney Kardashian

Ever since he'd had a brief and fulfilling relationship with the company van, my husband had been trying to talk me into getting one of my own. So I should have seen this coming. But I was pregnant, hormonal and mourning the loss of my pre-pregnancy waist, so I didn't. "I like my SUV," I replied, keeping my eyes on the mirror to show him how little I was invested in the conversation.

"Babe, there just isn't enough room in there for three kids," was his logical reply.

"Sure there is. Three car seats fit in the back seat, and there's always the third row when I need to pick someone else up, too."

"True," he said. "But come show me how you're going to fold down the middle seat when there are three car seats on it to get to the third row."

And just like that, my argument crumbled.