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What My Credit Cards Say About Me

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A working mom is really just two different people with the same DNA. Don’t believe me? Look at my credit cards.

During my last business trip I realized that each of my cards depicts a distinct side of me. Scan the statement on my corporate card and you’d likely label me a millennial jetsetter with a taste for luxury. That sassy lady wears clothes from trendy boutiques with names like Pookie & Sebastian, prefers cabs to subways and (gasp!) walking, dines at chic urban restaurants that require reservations, and sleeps at polished hotels that city mags deem “buzzworthy.” She’s a proud card-carrying member of a hair salon chain that specializes in blowouts and is a connoisseur of fine flavored iced coffee. (It takes that girl a full five minutes to order an espresso drink!) Her go-to apps include CNN, Twitter, Facebook, JetBlue and Huffington Post, all evidenced from the iTunes charges she’s acquired.

The debit card statement reveals an equally smart but seemingly more sensible mom to a six-year-old with a magnetic attraction to Dollar Store toys. This “cardholder” has naturally curly hair and a style of dress one might call Target chic. She occasionally splurges with takeout from Pollo Tropical, hits the family-friendly gym only when the kid zone is open, and has been known to sport chipped nail polish. Her daily routine includes ample time inside her Honda CRV shuttling to the grocery store, a tidy elementary school, and the park—all marked by regular visits to BP. Go-to apps include Food Network, various kids’ games that involve some form of racing, Netflix and Google Maps.

On the surface it might seem unlikely that these women have ever met, but alas, both belong to me, and I’m sure millions of other working moms have similar credit card statements. Such is the life. I switch roles (sometimes several times a day), and each requires its own way of dressing, talking, even thinking. There are times when I feel split in two, but truthfully, I kind of like the duality of my life. The perpetual stream of cocktail hours allows me to stay in touch with the “me” who loved foreign films and The New York Times long before Madagascar and Goodnight Moon. And when I’m home with my boy, I can let my proverbial hair down, wear flip-flops and host killer birthday parties.

It’s really a great life. Don’t believe me? You should see my credit card statements.

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