Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Where We Stand

There is an article that has recently come to my attention.

Why Women Still Can't Have it All ~ by Anne-Marie Slaughter

I only read the first page and will probably wait to read the others tomorrow after wedding prep stuff for Elff is finished. (today we burned the edges of the programs, they look pretty cool)

It's a really thought provoking piece for me so far because of my experiences early in life and the reactions my elders had to them. You see, I've only ever wanted to be a GOOD wife and a GOOD mother; along with learning every language in the world and being a botanist that specialized in healing plants. Honest and truly being the pillar for my family to be built around I saw as a challenging and rewarding goal.
 Dear God. One would think that I had just told some one that I longed to start my own cute baby animal drowning service. Even the men who had asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up were horrified: "That's all? Surely a smart girl like you would want to be more than that." And this is one of the more mild reactions. One woman outright yelled at me as if I had broken something sacred.
Well, yeah I also want to learn languages and become a botanist, but those were secondary dreams. I figured I could chase them and wait for the right guy to drop into my lap. Language school turned out to be too pricey, and I still haven't found a botany degree that meets what I'm really interested in (as least in the U.S. we like to deny that the natural world can be any real good without first being refined and genetically altered). Good thing I found my man. (^_^)

I understand that my maternal predecessors had to bite and claw and fight with all they had to get any rights to anything other than: Teacher, Nurse, Housekeeper, Cook, Wifeywife. I get it, you want me to rise to the heights that are available now. However, it's an option that has been made available to me that I have honestly considered. I get how my choice to stay within the traditional gender role can be disappointing to that generation of women.
Is my admiration not enough?

Sometimes I still find myself cornered and, well, chastised by other women and men even for not going all out and trying to take the professional career path, or rather invade it like one would if one were a conquering army, AND have a family on the side. One the side, like salad dressing.
It makes me think of the move Mona Lisa Smile. It was really hard to sit through at first but one scene gave me hope. It's near the end when one of the girls decides to get married and not go to law school and the whole conversation is awesome. I tried to find it on YouTube, apparently no one else thought it was worth cutting out and posting. The only clip I found cut off right as the conversation got really good and I couldn't find the continuation. But here's the bit I could find. Clicky?

One blogger Garalog, an older and super rad gentleman, had some really great thoughts on the whole 'woman: family vs career' thing. I really really enjoyed reading his insights; not to mention his writing style was like really good chocolate to my brain.

As much as some people tell me that I'm wasting myself being at home I don't think I'll ever regret my decision. I know me, and when I come to the end of the road sitting on the porch with hands that are well worn and soft over old photos I won't regret a thing. Because I will have been the heart of my home, the strength and love that kept my man and children going in the face of the monstrous world that looms over us.

The Light Heart Lives Long~ Ladies. <3

P.S. Let me know what you think if you read either the piece or Garalog's thoughts on the piece. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

1 comment:

  1. I think every man and woman should be respected for what they decide to do with their lives. It's their decision. I applaud your decision.