I Look Up to Women Who Follow Their Passions, and I’m Not Sorry
If your Facebook newsfeed is anything like mine, it is constantly bombarded with people sharing random stories, status updates, and pictures from blogs and websites. Usually I pass right over those things because most of the time they are about another teenage celebrity going to jail or some meme about wine. Occasionally, however, some things catch my eye and I can’t help but take the bait. And this time I was like a trout on a fishing line.
When I opened up the link I was surprised at what I was reading. The author was talking about why she looks down on women who do the “average” thing – get married and have children. She discussed how women are celebrated for all the wrong reasons. She believes that we should be having parties for the woman who landed a promotion or backpacked across Asia, not for babies being born or people finding love. As she so eloquently put it, “literally ANYONE can do that.”
The author also mentioned that if women want to be seen as equal in the workplace, they need to put the same amount of effort into their careers as men do. There is no possible way they can do this if they have children. Children require effort at home and if you have kids you will constantly be tired and exhausted and your work will suffer, men don’t help at home so there is no way you can be both a career woman and have a life at home. Therefore, you cannot have a husband or kid if you want to be awesome at life, at least awesome in her eyes.
As a person who married relatively young and a mother who has done both the stay-at-home thing and is now working from home, I can say one thing: she’s right. As a wife and mother, your job doesn’t end when you leave the office. It continues at home (sometimes all night) and over the weekends. You have responsibilities that often times will take you away from work, whether it be a sick child at home or coming up with a plan during your third meeting in four hours of how to successfully potty train your 2 year old.
I also agree with her that women should be celebrated for their amazing accomplishments like getting a big promotion or backpacking through Asia. I read an article a while back talking about how great it would be that women would be celebrated in the same way as their weddings and baby showers when the graduate college or land their first post-grad job. Yes, that would be great. Those things deserve to be celebrated.
But here’s the thing, finding my husband and celebrating the beginning of our life together was a big deal to me. Having our first child after being apart for an eight month deployment was something to celebrate. I’ve always wanted to be a mother so being at home with my child and pursuing my career is something I want to do. I am proud that I am able to handle all those things at once. So who is to say that this person, or anyone else, should think it’s wrong?
I don’t look down on women who wait to get married or have children, or those women who decide they don’t want either of those things in their lives. As long as they are living the life they want to lead, then more power to them. No person, man or woman should feel as though they aren’t worthy of saying they’ve accomplished big things in life simply because someone thinks their life is “average.” Maybe in the author’s eyes my life is boring, typical, and unaccomplished. And so what if it is? It is my life to be lived. I am proud to married to my husband, and being a mother is the most tedious, unglamorous, and wonderful job I’ve ever had.
Good for you, blogger on the internet. You are pursuing your career as you want it to be. That’s awesome, and it should be celebrated in any way you choose. Don’t mind me, while I sit over here and proudly drink my cup of coffee with a two-year old on my lap, plan my best friend’s baby shower, and make a packing list for my cousin’s wedding.