Wednesday, August 5, 2009

If I were in Sweden Motherhood WOULD be a career

I took a vacation day yesterday and it was relaxingly productive. Sam can't fathom my need to be "productive" on my days off. I love the feeling of accomplishment from knowing that I was able to pursue interests and be the mom and future wife I want to be.

Yesterday I achieved stay-at-home-mom rocker status. I woke-up and made breakfast for Sam before he went to work and I packed his lunch. The house was clean, the litter box scrubbed, and the laundry done. Embroidery and reading was accomplished. Hope received a knitting lesson and a cooking lesson; she was patient with the knitting and the spaghetti and meatballs we made were a hit. To round out the day I baked a cake and enjoyed a visit from some neighbors.

Of course, today is another story. I was at work by 7 a.m. and when I arrived home at 3:30 I had no energy to cook dinner, much less engage in baking and stitching. Poop.

As a Gender Studies minor, I've done some deep thinking about the role of feminism in my life. Most definitely I'm a third-wave feminist. Thanks for getting us in the work-force, Women's Lib! Now I can work 40 hours a week AND keep house. Sarcasm aside, I think being a career woman is marvelous, if that is your cup of tea. Women who juggle it all -- career and home -- are freaking amazing. I, however, would welcome the opportunity to stay home. Despite the tattoos and saucy mouth, I'm a old-fashioned girl at heart.


Plasmocat said...

Empowerment should be the ability to choose one or the other or all of the above, without regard to gender for that matter.

Strictly speaking, I wouldn't blame early feminists for putting us in a position where we have to struggle to be both professionals and caretakers. I blame the mentality that uses the term "help the wife around the house." Help the wife? Because you don't live there? Because you work harder?

Semantics *are* important because they illustrate the framework of the thought process. There are more ppl who think of it as sharing the chores than there used to be, but until the fact that a family shares responsibilities according to opportunity, ability and/or preference (without making assumptions as to who "should" do what based on chromosome content) .. until that is a given taken for granted the fight isn't done.

On a larger scale, I blame the dudes (and they are still mostly old white dudes) running the monetary system. They saw the opportunity to latch onto another category of consumer and *of course* they want to make those consumers dependent on their products (goods, services, whatever).

It's not that our predecessors fought us into a corner ... it's that the battleground has shifted and the rules of engagement changed without notice much less consent, and because the nature of the fight has become more subtle in some ways than they were before.

The next fight in terms of our rights as women ... well, really ... as free-willed human beings of any sort ... is to obliterate the shackles of those who would place as many ppl as they can into modern forms of indentured servitude.

But until the comfortable middle realizes it doesn't have to buy into materialism to obtain happiness, the greedy bastards at the top of the food chain are going to continue to get fatter and will continue to push the limits of that group's ability to consume until it's tapped out.

And the poor schleps at the bottom of the food chain are going to grow in number until there's not much of a comfortable middle anymore, if any.

Wait ... that's a rant. Sorry! Hit a hot button for me.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog, already in progress!

Michelle said...

I feel a little intimidated by the previous comment. But I just wanted to say that there are both good and bad points about wherever you are on the working mama/stay at home mama dilemma.

danielle said...

I love staying home to care for my family but it took some getting used to! When I was a "working" mom I had more guilt but I was way less tired! Now I am addicted to Isabelle so I am looking for work in a daycare so she can go with me! Motherhood is never simple! The wife part is much easier, he's happier when I'm happy!

julochka said...

it's always a dilemma, isn't, family. i think a lot of unhappiness in the world is because people think they must "have it all," and be perfect at both all the time. i've had to learn (by reminding myself constantly) that it's not always going to be perfect and there are times when you will drop the ball on the motherhood thing and sometimes you will drop the ball on the career thing. some days you are totally energized by it and some days it wears you out. but i guess that's life, isn't it? and it's what keeps things interesting. :-)