I’ve railed against the side effects of militant feminism several times, but today I’m really feeling it. I’m tired and the truth of the core of my being is fervent, bright, and boiling. I’m just not relevant, and that’s perfectly fine. I have no desire to be. I’m sorry, girlfriends-who-expect-more-of-someone-with-my-personality. I am not special or dynamic, and it’s totally, utterly fine!
So many women are more brave than me. They go into battle daily with trolls, asshats, morons, and other thoughtless grumpy types. They get beat up and give back as good as they get (except with actual rational thought behind it). Me, I’m the diplomat. I try to bring everyone to the table and ask them to sit as long as they’ll be civil. If you’re not civil, you can go to your room.
Which makes me, of course, the mom.
I don’t have kids. I helped raise my sister and to some degree, my brother. As he has Down syndrome, even our little sister helped raise him a bit, too. She is instrumental, I believe, in his behavioural turn around after I left for college. She’s a great kid, and has become an amazing young woman with a bright future in playwriting. I am proud of her.
It’s ok. I’ve come to terms with this, & in my own brave way, I am perfectly fine with nobodyism. Not everyone needs be a Queen Boudiccea or even a Queen Mum. We should all aspire to be the best that we can be, and what I’ve found is that I am good at making people feel wanted, comfortable, and listened to on occasion. That makes me either a therapist or a wife. We all know what happened to my therapy career (thank God), so that leaves…
‘Cept I’m not married. Meh, minor issue. The fact of the matter is, radical feminism has somehow made women ashamed to be “just a wife” or “just a mom”. We simply have to have it all, or we ain’t nuthin’. Well, as much as I enjoy amusing other people with my writing and tweeting, I find that it’s not necessarily what I want to do as a career. The more people push me to be more relevant, the less fun it becomes, & the less real it feels. It’s not my goal to be relevant (and you’re probably sitting there thinking “Mission accomplished, sister”). It’s my goal to make you happy. That’s it. Just happy.
After a long struggle with the concept of relevance, I now realize I am brave enough to say I don’t care for it. I will support you in your relevance. I will revel in your accomplishments, your accolades, and your influence. I, however, need none of this, and I am not going to be afraid to say it any more. I am not letting down other women by wishing for a quiet life where I support the relevant. There have always been wives, mothers, & friends; the super woman is an artificial construct that some have taken on with magnificence. I’m just, kind of, like, everybody’s wife I ‘spose.
My dear friend once said to me that I seemed to belong to everybody else. I was truly not spending enough time with her, & I didn’t realize it. I also felt I had no time to myself, because it’s important to me to make sure everybody is doing ok. It gets to the point where I get everyone confused, as I’ve taken on quite a few folks in varying levels of psychological need. A person who was honestly very close to me thought I had forgotten about her because I spent so much time making sure everybody got a little piece of me. I’ve since learned that’s an INFJ trait, but it doesn’t excuse the fact that the people close to me deserve my attention as much as complete strangers with seemingly more immediate needs.
Yes, when I’m at work and you are paying me for your undivided attention, the personal life needs to go on hold. But when I’m home, I shouldn’t still be ‘working’ on saving humanity, one lonely, striving soul at a time. However, I’m compelled. So I’ve tried to set aside quality time. Try is the operative word.
This busy silliness is simply a manifestation of my non-wife-itude, I guess. It also generates nothing, earns nothing, except to find out that sometimes, I made someone’s day. That is golden. How much more glorious to be able to start a family’s every day with glowing happiness? How is that silly or irrelevant?
Why is it “less than” to bring peace, comfort, and laughter into people’s lives?
It IS someone’s job to fight the power, and I love the people who take that on. But I’m a caregiver. Bring me your wounds after the fight; I will patch them up. Taking me into battle is like taking a grenade with no pin, though. Who knows where I’ll go off? I’m used to spreading unconditional love; stoke my anger and it’s a hot mess.
I should have slept last night, but physical misery makes us honest. Me, I’m just a girl. Being just a girl isn’t bad. It never was, not even in the 1960s, but you weren’t progressive, smart, or useful if you admitted it. You know what? It’s 2010. I’m a conservative woman, and I’m therefore free to say what I like about my role in the world. I’m not bound by a pseudo-intellectual agenda. It’s ok for me to say I’m just a care givery type, and it’s ok for you to be the total opposite of that. You are awesome. You are awesome in a way people recognize and award. I am awesome, just…smaller.
You don’t have to recognize that, because it doesn’t fit into your definition of “awesome”. It’s ok. Just know that I am proud of you, & I always will be.