I remember Granny’s hands
They were long and slender
The skin was fair and wrinkled
Her veins bulged and I’d play with them.
They were beautiful hands.
I remember Granny’s hands
I’d sit on her lap and admire them
They were worn hands
But her nails her red and long
They glistened and I’d touch them.
They were beautiful hands.
I remember Granny’s hands
They prepared meals and washed
They sewed and they worked
They were tired hands
But they were covered in diamonds
She sparkled and I’d smile.
They were beautiful hands.
They were Granny’s hands.
I used to think my family was perfect. I grew up with what I call the “picket white fence dream” kind of life. I thought we were happy. I know we had differences now and then and I would rebel every so often or fight with my sister from time to time, but I never believed we had any sort of dysfunction, or ever could. I took pride in my family. Perhaps the wrong kind of pride. The bad kind.
I looked at other families around me growing up and I could see the problems, the obvious and the not so obvious, and I guess I harbored some sort of vain conceit that we were better. This was so wrong. Not that I discovered any outrageous skeletons in our family closet or anything but, well, that feeling was wrong to begin with, and then one day I realized that we weren’t perfect, as individuals or a family. Not by a long shot!
I suppose as you get older more things happen and more differences spring up and I guess we each deal with them differently. But now I find myself envying those other families. I see a closeness despite the dysfunction. A closeness that I seemed to lose as the years passed by. I see bonds unbreakable amongst the chaos. Differences abound and yet there is still such an undying love. And more than love there is friendship. I envy those friendships and wonder how I missed that. Why didn’t that happen with my own family? Maybe because we didn’t have so much of the dysfunction..? Others through chaos and disorder found a way to come together and create something beautiful, whereas I see only an ever-growing chasm. A family once so close has now grown far apart and, try as I may, I don’t know if there is anything I can do about it.
Perhaps the first step is humility. Humility and forgiveness. A breaking down of pride. But then I can only speak for myself. But I suppose that is a start.
“As with many people, Charles, who could not talk, wrote with fullness. He set down his loneliness and his perplexities, and he put on paper many things he did not know about himself.”
- John Steinbeck, East of Eden
Unless I’m studying, I do not often make marks in my books as I read them but this line stood out to me. I reread it a few times, then pulled out a pen. I didn’t like the character it referred to but I felt like I could relate to him all of a sudden. This line is descriptive of myself. It’s the very problem I’ve been trying to wrap my head around for years. I’ve always become so frustrated with myself for not being able to speak up and always having to resort to pen and paper. I feel stupid. When I am called upon to speak for whatever reason I am caught dumbfounded. The words don’t process and I stumble and stammer or just say something I’d rather not say. I am no silver tongue.
Give me paper and it’s a whole different story. I could become the most eloquent “speaker” if I really try. Thoughts pour out of me and just seem to appear at the tip of my pen. However, ask me to read what I’ve written and once again all eloquence is gone. I fumble over the words, destroying any poesy they may have had. Sometimes I just don’t know what to say right off the bat. I need a chance to think and prepare. But if and/or when I get that chance I realize there’s so much more to my response than I may have originally thought. Suddenly I’m scrawling down whole essays from what had just been a two-line rebuttal. This has happened on numerous occasions.
Well, as much as I may dislike Charles Trask at this point in the story (I haven’t gotten very far into the novel just yet), it’s good to know I’m not alone. And though I may feel like it sometimes, I am not entirely dimwitted. I just have to express myself a little differently sometimes.
I think I need to give up on writing a novel. I’ve tried numerous times just for the sake of writing and it never works out. I never get past the first chapter. I am not imaginative to come up with a story and put it neatly and orderly on paper.
I love to write but there are so many different styles of writing. A writer may be a poet but not a playwright, an essayist but not a novelist. Genre is not one size fits all. I cannot write a novel. Maybe a short story? Maybe I should steer clear of fiction altogether. I refuse, however, to quit writing.
To the people out there that say I shouldn’t have quit my job, or that I should look in to this job or that job, or that believe there’s no such thing as a single income, 2-parent family anymore, to you I say this:
I have the best job in the world. I am a homemaker. Is that term too old-fashioned? I like it because it’s broad, just like my “job.” Not only am I “just” a mom (I hate that phrase), but I am responsible for the physical as well as moral upbringing of a future member of our society. If you’re sick of those brats as children who turn into jerks as adults, maybe you’re with me in believing we need more stay-at-home moms who focus on a proper upbringing for their children. Focus. Key word. I do not support those “stay-at-home moms” who sit on a couch all day collecting welfare or child support or grandma-help while their kids run wild. Now I know not everyone can be a stay-at-home mom for various reasons. I’m just speaking for myself.
Being a mom is such a broad job. Not only is it a 24-hour job for 18+ years but more and more responsibilities, or duties to use a workplace term, are added with each new year, heck rather each new day it seems! And we don’t even get paid! As cheesy at it sounds the payoff is something far more gratifying than money.
As a homemaker not only am I a mom but I am a wife. This job is just as important. Not only do I have to maintain healthy, happy children but I also have to maintain a healthy, happy relationship with my husband. This is not always an easy task when juggling everything else that life dishes out! “Work.” The job of a homemaker requires work like any other job, only it’s 24/7.
Then add on top of the important personal relationships the lesser but still important duties of housework, errands, cooking (ugh!), and so on and then just making time for “down time” can be a big task in itself. And as life goes on the duties accumulate. So this isn’t just a job but a career, not only a career but a lifestyle. One perhaps that may even require being a “workaholic.” But it’s worth it. I love my “job.” I wouldn’t have it any other way. Yes, in a single income family money gets tight and strict budgets are required but life is not all about money. Happiness is not all about money. As a wife I depend on my husband, as a family we depend on God’s blessing. And the rest will follow.
On the subject of feminism: it is not a matter of human worth or value but of gender roles. A woman is of no less value than a man, but she is not the same. A man is no better than a woman, only different. No matter your argument for or against feminism you cannot ignore or change the fact that a woman has a vagina and a man has a penis. Apples and oranges. They will never be the same.
That being said, this does not mean that a woman who can do the same exact job as a man should not be paid the same. IF she can do the job, by all means let her. However, you have to take the good with the bad. If a woman commits murder shouldn’t she face the same penalty as a man? Yet so often women are shown far more leniency. If a woman wants and has the ability to do the same things as a man the results, good or bad, should be the same.
So once again this isn’t about value or worth. A person is a person but you can’t ignore the differences. A woman cannot always physically do what a man can do. A petite woman can never be a big lumberjack. The same goes for men. The obvious: a man cannot give birth. Maybe some women can be lumberjacks, maybe some men can crochet. Skills can be learned but physical differences are far more difficult to change and must be acknowledged. This doesn’t make either sex any better than the other, only different. So why can’t we accept that?
It doesn’t make any sense when feminists claim to be so proud of being woman yet try so hard to dress, behave, or work like men. They seem so focused on making a statement that they miss the beauty and power of simply being a woman. Everything we do should be done because that is what we want, not because we feel we have something to prove. We are all different and we all have our place and purpose. Our job then is to be content therewith. Happiness is found in contentment and contentment can only be achieved when we come to terms with who and what we are. We must accept ourselves before we can expect others to accept us. Again, human value is the same. This should never be mixed up in the subject of feminism.
I hate politics and have no intention of blogging about politics but can I just take a moment to vent? New healthcare. Ugh! When will things just get under control? I thought we could keep our same insurance?! Our same plan?! We have coverage through my husband’s employment benefits and as soon as this new act was first passed our provider changed. Then February hit and our coverage changed. That wasn’t such a big deal. Now we have to fill out more forms for a whole new provider AND new coverage all over again! And you wonder why I haven’t been able to get to a doctor. Every time I want to set up an appointment things change. Well that’s fine, I can wait. (God forbid an emergency occur.) But I have a 15-month old. She needs routine check-ups, routine immunizations. She gets sick. Accidents happen. I need something reliable and dependent. And yet my family, and millions of other families, are being dangled here and yo-yo’ed there! This is ridiculous.
There. Rant over. You should not here much more about politics from me. At least not about any specific topics like this.
“Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the dangers of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of ‘crack-pot’ than the stigma of conformity. And on issues that seem important to you, stand up and be counted at any cost.” — Thomas J. Watson
A friend of mine posted this on Facebook just a few minutes ago. This is exactly what I’m talking about here people! :) And it just seems to fit my lifestyle anyway. Thanks J.