When I was a little girl, I wanted to be Miss America. I had no higher aspirations, I just really, really, wanted to be Miss America.
But that little girl grew up. And she started paying attention to the world around her. And she conformed.
I mean, my Mom worked, and she didn’t need a man to help HER. I certainly would never be beholden to anyone. I would earn my own ticket, I would change the world, I would be WONDER woman.
I’m sitting at my desk, I’m 16, AP English. The Principal is talking to us about something or another and he lets loose that his wife is a stay-at-home Mom, and how that’s an important thing for his family. If looks could kill he would be dead from the daggers shooting from my eyes. PIG!
Oh. If 16-year-old me could see 36-year-old me.
I was a scrappy one. I worked my way through college, graduating in three years with honors. I practically forced my interviewer to let me into his top-tier Business School after my prerequisite 2 years of “real world” experience.
$50,000 later, I graduate. And I meet a man.
I certainly didn’t go out looking for it, that’s for sure. But I met him. I met “the one”, and we fell madly in love and got married. I quit my job and moved to the middle of nowhere and I took a less-prestigious job, but we were in LOVE. Then he got transferred overseas, I had trouble finding work at all let alone work that was ‘good enough’ for someone of my caliber. Then I got pregnant, and I haven’t seen the inside of an office since.
That’s just life. It doesn’t generally turn out the way we think or hope it will.
So, this brilliant girl who had brilliant aspirations, who has fancy degrees from lovely Universities, spends her days sweeping the halls and washing the sheets and cooking the meals. It ain’t glamorous work. Any Mom can tell you that.
It’s down-right degrading.
Should I be embarrassed that I made the choices I did? I didn’t become an Astronaut or the President of the United States.
I tried, I really did, and I failed. My husband and I couldn’t both have careers. He travels too much, someone had to stay at home to be the rock, to hold down the fort.
But this means that, GASP! I mop my own floors. It’s true. And my daughter should be ashamed. Because instead of buying her a “Doctor Barbie”, I’ve obviously purchased her one of “the worst toys for girls”.
So, you see the source of my rant.
BY THE WAY. Children mimic us. They like to. I sweep, my daughter wants to help.
I don’t know who these super-powered women who do it all are. The ones who have a happy family, happy husband, high-powered career. I don’t particularly want to know her if she exists, though I’m PRETTY SURE SHE DOESN’T. All of my friends who have careers spend their days riddled with guilt that they don’t spend enough time with their familes. The other gals spend their days riddled with remorse that they just couldn’t do it all.
And they are bent over vacumming up goldfish all day long.
And their daughters are ‘helping’ and they are learning.
Is it so wrong? Why can’t it be good enough to aspire to be a wife and a Mother?
Because I think all I and my female contemporaries feel like, is shit.