Friday, January 24, 2014

I typically don't post twice a day. Heck I barely post twice a week. But I stumbled upon this gem of an article titled "I Look Down On Young Women With Husbands and Kids and I'm Not Sorry." In order to not add to her page view count, I'll break it down for you here. 

"Every time I hear someone say that feminism is about validating every choice a woman makes I have to fight back vomit."

I am going to laugh if you're pregnant. Really, really laugh. And laugh again. And then you're going to have to labor. Which makes me laugh some more. Don't judge me, I was once a young woman, with a husband and kids. Now I just drink copious amounts of wine to drown out the screaming. Mostly by me, as I stare in the mirror. But I digress. 

"Do people really think that a stay at home mom is really on equal footing with a woman who works and takes care of herself? There’s no way those two things are the same.

That's a fair point. I mean, there are days when I don't change out of my pajamas until like noon...ok three...ok the next day. I cut my hair so I would stop putting it in a ponytail. It's in a ponytail right now. So yeah, I barely work at taking care of myself. You have a point. 

"Having kids and getting married are considered life milestones........... These aren’t accomplishments, they are actually super easy tasks, literally anyone can do them......... They are, by definition, average. And here’s the thing, why on earth are we settling for average?"

I guess it depends on what you think is average. Yes, women have babies. Lots of women have of babies. Some women have lots of babies. It's not the producing of the baby that's impressive, well until you actually think about the one sperm and the one egg that made this tiny heart that's protected by tiny ribs in a tiny person with perfect fingernails. It's the next fifty years. Now mom has a responsibility. There's a tiny heart that trusts completely in this woman, beautiful eyes that see with complete certitude that this woman will always be here for me, that the heart I grew under will always protect me. While that's always the expectation, it's not an average expectation. 

"If women can do anything, why are we still content with applauding them for doing nothing?"

Say what you want, but growing a person isn't nothing. It certainly isn't unusual, but it isn't nothing. Nor is being able to quell the rising passions of a toddler, or drying the tears of an eleven year old or keeping a six year old cavity free. Unless by nothing you mean not glamorous, in which case I would agree with you. I have no clue what I've done over the last eleven years, but I can tell by my physical and mental condition, it ain't nothin' sistah!

"I want to have a shower for a woman when she backpacks on her own through Asia, gets a promotion, or lands a dream job not when she stays inside the box and does the house and kids thing which is the path of least resistance..............You will never have the time, energy, freedom or mobility to be exceptional if you have a husband and kids."

And after she leaves Asia, Asia stays the same. Asia doesn't care who backpacks across her. Seriously. Now, take a mother away from a child. Heck I simply try to shower in the morning and it's either World War Apocalypse or the world's greatest injustice. Mostly because I won't let a toddler into the shower with me. Typically he hates the shower. Unless I'm in it. And he's fully clothed. I hope that you don't know what it is like to live without your mother. I certainly don't. As a little girl, I remember laying in my bed crying at the thought that my parents might die. Because, in my world, there wasn't an ordinary thing about them. Trust me, there were times I really wanted them to be ordinary. But they weren't. And they were my world.  

"I hear women talk about how “hard” it is to raise kids and manage a household all the time. I never hear men talk about this. It’s because women secretly like to talk about how hard managing a household is so they don’t have to explain their lack of real accomplishments. Men don’t care to “manage a household.” They aren’t conditioned to think stupid things like that are “important.”"

First off, guys don't complain about housework because well...they're guys. Ugly reality. It's not that laundry all the time is hard, not even the pairing of socks. Nor is cleaning although I am not of fan scraping smushed graham  cracker off the floor.  Nor is cooking three meals a day, for the most discerning palates created.What's hard is to juggle this to do list, while being completely available for any number of tiny persons. Tiny persons who can only be comforted by your arms. Tiny persons who will only sleep with their heads resting near the heartbeat that they were formed listening to. Tiny persons who trust you completely. Tiny persons whose little hearts need the cocoon that only you can form. And then these tiny persons grow. They grow into young people. Young people who want to be accepted. Young people who want to be liked. Young people who are setting off into the world, but so desperately need a navigator still. And so you navigate them, ever so gently so that they learn to be independent but their spirit stands strong. And that is hard. It's not just hard, it's heartbreaking. 

Just as you will never forget those first moments, the first glances at the precious face that's been nurtured within you, you don't forget the first time you wipe tears off your little girl's face. Not those tears of rage that come from nap time or teeth brushing, but the tears of hurt that come from the outside world. And you have to stay strong. You have to hold her and guide her and comfort her, without pounding on those who hurt her. That, my dear, is hard. You have to watch your babies stumble and fall. You have to watch them make the wrong decisions and just pick them up after. You have to love them enough to let the fly. But you have to be strong enough to let them come back. You have to love them enough that you would die for them, you would kill for them and you have to let go of their hands. And that is hard. Well, I wish it was just hard. Because working out is hard. This, this is gut wrenching, physically crushing, emotionally draining love. Love that you freely chose, love that you give not requiring reciprocation. That is all consuming. It is a different level than hard. 

Not to mention, I've tried to tell my kids that eating three times a day is "stupid." They've tried to tell my that teeth brushing is "stupid." That man who doesn't think much of housework, well he's maintained that bed making and clothes folding are pointless. 

"Women will be equal with men when we stop demanding that it be considered equally important to do housework and real work. They are not equal. Doing laundry will never be as important as being a doctor or an engineer or building a business. This word play is holding us back."

You're right.  Washing clothes isn't on the same significant level as brain surgery. Well, unless you don't have clean underwear. And you have to go to the doctor. That might get awkward. But it's clear you don't understand the mindset of those women who freely choose to stay home. It's not because laundry is awesome, or vacuuming is fun. It's because that's where they are. They, the people you are giving everything up for. The people you love so much it hurts. The people you would give the world to. So you give them clean clothes. You give them warm food. You give them a sanctuary to relax in. You're not doing housework for housework's sake. You're doing it for their sake. Because, much as you desperately want, you can't give them the world. But you can make their world beautiful. So you try.  

Is it important? Not to you. But then I don't do it for you. I do it for them. Am I important? Not in the slightest. Am I important to them? I can't walk out of the room without them chasing me down. Will it matter in twenty years? Just to a handful of people. But then, that's all I've ever cared about. Just my little handful of the world. 

I know the feeling of chubby arms clinging around my neck. I know feeling of a toddler's hand securely in mine. I know feeling of tears on my shoulder. I know I am needed. I am needed by five tiny persons. That's all. It's not impressive. But I am their world. Not because I'm special or even a good mom. I'm just a mom. But that's what's expected of moms. All moms. To be the world to their children. Until their children slip away.

If moms do their jobs right, no one notices. If we are there for our children, if we love them, if we listen to them, if we are there to guide them, precious few people notice. And what you don't notice, you don't tend to value. 

So go ahead and look down on me. I'll be looking east, showing my little one a sunrise for the first time. I prefer my view. 


  1. Awesome! Just what I needed to be reminded of today.

  2. Your last paragraph nails it, Bekah. The woman who wrote the piece is to be pitied, nothing more.

  3. Beautiful. Thanks to this first read of my day, our world here at home is going to be a little better today.

  4. That's my daughter and I couldn't be prouder. Today I definitely feel like a success. Our nest is empty but we helped fill some of the best, most loving, most faithful ones ever.

    Yeah ... this is a good day.