Friday, March 9, 2012

Where's that stupid glass slipper?

For many years now I've been sufficiently annoyed by women who define themselves as a Princess or a Diva (except Aretha Franklin. I respect her. Or whatever). This could possibly be because most women I meet who choose to define themselves in that way should instead be defined as hugely egotistical bitchfaced whores. Seriously, I always find myself thinking things like: if you are like forty and feel the need for everyone to wait on you hand and foot and constantly give you money and/or buy you big presents for doing mundane things ("I made him dinner so he bought me this diamond ring!") and tell you how fabulous you are all the time? You might need Dr. Phil. Or Judge Judy to give you a big smack-down. Or something.

But as I've mentioned many times I usually don't care what anyone else does because I'm both somewhat unfocused and also kind of a jerk. Pretty much if it doesn't directly affect me or my family? I probably don't care much. That makes me a bad Christian but a great mom. I'm working on the former.

(And I'm not talking about big, huge major things like child molestation and the plight of orphans and whatnot. I'm just saying I don't get my panties in a tizzy if you let your six year old kid wear pants that say "HOT" right across their butt or something. That's your business)

All that being said? At the risk of sounding like a huge douche, I have to admit something that's been rumbling around in my head for a while.

Sometimes? I really, really, REALLY hate being a woman.

Because it's hard.

I honestly, in the truest place in my heart, would not want to be married to my husband if he did not respect my value as a human being. I would not want to be married to my husband if he didn't respect my writing, my job, my earnings, my good credit score, and my ability to smoke everyone's butt at Jeopardy. I would not want to be married to my husband if he were the type of man who expected me to at his beck and call every second or ever, ever make him a sandwich. I would not want to be married to any man who thought I was not his equal in every single way.

But sometimes.

Oh sometimes.

I really wish someone else could be the adult. I wish someone else could make all the decisions. I wish someone would magically swoop in and say, "Here you go! You can sleep in! You don't have to be financially responsible for everyone's future! You can spend more than thirty-five seconds putting on mascara this morning! You can take a hot bath with no interruptions! Enjoy!"

But it doesn't happen. Because somehow, someone decided that women could do it all. I would like to find that person and kick their teeth in.

We can do it all. Of course we can.

But sometimes...I just don't want to.

I'm proud of my work. I'm proud of my education. I'm proud of myself (though I rarely admit it) that I work hard and made at least a couple of my childhood dreams come true (motherhood and being a published author). It's not that I can't. It's never that I can't.

It's just sometimes that I'm tired.

Sometimes the weight of the world is on me. And it's really freaking heavy.

Sometimes when friends complain about their husbands working too much? I silently sympathize with the husbands. Because I know the fear they carry in their hearts. I know that I wake up at night and worry about college funds and having two children who will be sixteen on the same day and need car insurance. I know that worry of not being good enough, smart enough, or fast enough. I know that sinking feeling of seeing 1/3 of your coworkers get laid off...and wondering if you'll be next. I get it. I hate that I get it. But I get it.

You know what else I hate?

I hate that being smart and responsible is somehow a punishment. I hate that some women don't respect me as a mother because I work full-time. I hate that I work full-time and I'm still a full-time mom and I manage to get my kids to school with a packed lunch every single day and a smile on my face at least until they get out of the car, and I still feel like I'm failing them somehow. Every. Day.

My husband does a lot and I'm grateful for that. He's much better at a lot of things than I am (laundry for example) and I'm much better at other things (anything related to a computer is relegated to me). I would really hate if he treated me like I wasn't able to help him load up a moving truck or earn enough money to pay the mortgage. I really would.

I think.

But sometimes?

I think maybe it would be a little bit okay. To just every now and then have a day off from my responsibilities and my fears. To get something sparkly for no reason at all. For someone to take care of me. Just for a little while.

Don't tell Gloria Steinem. She'd be all mad.


Bethany said...

Oh, I so get this. Sometimes I wish Calgon could take me away.

The stress of being the breadwinner, bill payer, etc etc can be so damn overwhelming. I feel on edge most of the time. I never get enough sleep, I'm mentally and physically exhausted. I really need some time to myself but that won't be happening any time soon.

Anyway... I know what you are talking about

And Gloria Steinem can kiss my fat, white ass.

val said...

I hear you. Life is full of paradoxes.

And the days of The Cleavers are long over.

Just so you know: I never feel like going to work.

(Who wants to tackle anything at 3in the afternoon??)

Or church.

And yet once I get there, I'm glad I washed, shampooed, dressed and arrived, and can listen.

There is no such thing as more more listening.

Steph? Big hugs. I love your new house and the adventure too.

love, Val

Karen said...

It will happen someday. When your kids are grown, you can do all that stuff every day, like sleep in and take hot baths and not have to feel so responsible. But honestly? For now? I highly recommend time for yourself. That's not being selfish or irresponsible. That is making sure you will be healthy enough (emotionally) to continue to be there for those kids and that wonderful husband of yours. The Bible says "Love thy neighbor as thyself." And if the way you love yourself is putting yourself last and acting like your needs don't matter? That's not a very good way to treat your neighbor. Know what I'm saying? It is okay to say to husband and children, "Family? I need a break. Once a week I need two hours to myself. Two hours, that's all. I might go upstairs to the bathroom and close the door, light some candles, pour some bubble bath, and read a book while I soak. I'm going to lock the door, and unless the house is on fire? Do not disturb me." And when you come out? You will feel so very much better. I promise. :)

Tarasview said...

oh honey, I think we'd all like a day off from the weight of the world sometimes. And I so wish I could give you one.

I bet Gloria would like one too.


Anonymous said...

Totally get this. Me, too. Here's to that mythical "one day" when we won't have anything we HAVE to do, right?


perdido said...

you are definitely not alone in this. Sometimes I look at women who get that treatment and I think how come I don't get that? I mean honestly, those women are usually bitches (just like you said LOL) and I am totally not so how come they get treated like princesses and I get treated like a workhorse. However, the one thing we have that they do not is that we know we can survive on our own we don't have to depend on a man to take care of us and although sometimes we might like it, I think if we weren't strong independent women we would hate it. LOL

Unknown said...

Its so true. It's so, so true. All of it. Couldn't have said it better myself.

p.s. I LOVE your house. I tried to comment on that post, but I was reading it on my iPhone and while I have the fancy gadget, I'm still not necessarily good at using it.

Keetha said...

Well said! I think every woman feels that way, at least every now and then.

Elizabeth said...

just resonating with this.