I Wish I Were a Man

I had hoped that all the changes I have made in my life lately would lead me to more well-being and overall happiness. At first it did, but lately I have been struggling.

Overwhelm

I am feeling overwhelmed – again. The whole purpose of quitting my negative job and moving away from family and their dramas was to help ease the overwhelm I had been feeling. Unfortunately, even though I cut down my hours of work and have more time to spend with my children, I am still feeling overly burdened by all the responsibility my roles in life have given me. I try to prioritize so that I lighten that burden, but even dropping things I normally require of myself, I find that I am running myself ragged with the things I need to do. All along I have such intense resentment towards my husband because it seems he contributes so little to the long list of things that need to be done daily. He, of course, feels he is doing more than his share and also feels the burden of all that needs to be done.

I don’t honestly think there is a solution other than me letting things just completely go to pot or hiring a live-in nanny. The first is out of the question as I cannot stand to live in filth and disorder. To see the kitchen sink full of dishes bothers me and I end up doing them despite telling myself “Let them be”. I can’t stand our new wood floor being covered with slobber marks from our little one who crawls everywhere leaving a slobber trail behind him. I try to let it stay dirty as long as I can stand but ideally I would be cleaning it every day, sometimes more than once a day, just to keep it nice. I see every spot, every shoe or piece of clothing, every toy, every speck of dirt, every dusty shelf, every dirty dish, every drip mark on the floor, every smudge and fingerprint. Each out of place thing makes me feel uneasy and if not fixed and put in its rightful place bothers me until I end up an irritable, uneasy and very unhappy momma. And when I do finally give in and clean, my children or husband seem to immediately undo it right in front of my eyes. It becomes so exasperating that I see no point in bothering to make things nice when no one is helping me keep it that way and does not seem to even notice what I do.

The second solution is just too damn expensive. A live-in nanny would cost all of my income and more. Plus, I highly doubt just anyone would do and I can’t image they would keep my house in the shape I would like it to be – I can’t even do that! Then there is living with a stranger all the time. I think I would probably drive her out by week’s end, either that or I would leave.

I Hate Being a Woman

The obvious solution is just to let it go and live with that which I despise. My home is my pride and joy and to see it completely wrecked all the time makes me not even want to be in my home. In fact, I can’t even find one place that is not chaotic. I need a place that is not chaotic! The best I can do is shut off the lights and hide in my son’s bedroom. It is the only room in the house that is orderly enough for me to somewhat relax.

I feel that I am expected to be this perfect person, keeping it all together and looking good despite it. I swear I won’t be a woman again in my next life. I hate it. I hate the expectations that society places upon women. We are expected to be super human – working outside the home while also keeping everything in order inside the home. I am the primary childcare giver, the dinner-maker, the bill-payer, the keep-it-all-together superwoman. When the children cry, they look for me, not daddy. When they are hungry, they want mommy. Yet when mommy wants something for herself there is some kind of inborn mechanism in children that makes them instantly demand attention. On top of all this, daddy also wants all of mommy’s attention and then gets mad when mommy says “No” and runs to the other side of the house to hide, hoping for even the briefest moment of alone-time. Doesn’t he know how much of my day is spent providing for everyone else but myself? To expect I have even an ounce of anything left to give him is ridiculous! Yet he whines and acts similarly to the children. Is that inborn? Is that a typical man-thing?

On top of all this there is the way I look. I have no time to look good anymore. In fact, I chopped all my hair off last weekend because I was sick and tired of trying to straighten my thick, coarse, unruly hair. Now I can just put my hands through it but the reaction I get from my family? My daughter cried and my husband said, “You look good” with a look on his face that said the opposite. My own mother, when she saw my hair, looked at me and said, “You look like your sister”, which I immediately took as an insult and she knew I would. But now I have 10 more minutes of sleep in the morning. 10 more minutes of me time. I say it is worth it. Screw all those who think I don’t look good.

But I think the worst part of all this stress and trying to live up to unrealistic expectations is the toll it is taking on my skin. My face is breaking out again and every time I look at myself I think I look tired, unhappy and ugly. I am back on antibiotics to try and help with the acne issue but it doesn’t help the tired eyes or droopy-looking skin that seemingly appeared overnight. I am starting to wonder if I am going to have to be on antibiotics the rest of my life just to keep the stress acne at bay so that I can at least somewhat appear to be keeping it together.

And finally I have this major anxiety of becoming so overcome with all the things I have to do that I let myself go completely and turn into one of those women who has allowed herself to gain unsightly pounds and walks around like a zombie in Wal-Mart wearing no makeup, hair a mess and children crying and tugging at her clothes. I work out three days a week and eat a very clean diet just to make sure my body doesn’t go to pot. I get tons of compliments on how I look. “Wow! You have a seven-month old? You look fantastic!”, is a common reaction I get from other women. One would think this would make me feel better, but it doesn’t. If they only knew how much effort it took just to work out the three days a week I do work out in order to keep my body looking good. I sometimes wonder why I do it. What is the point? Oh yeah, that is what is expected of me – society wants me to be superwoman so I oblige. I wish I could revolt but I just can’t.

Like I said, I hate being a woman. Men have it so much better (or so it seems).

Solutions?

I am begging my guide to help me find a solution. I can’t seem to find one, though. The only solution that seems obvious is for me to pack up my bags and leave and be gone for a very long time. When I think of just letting things go or accepting one thing or the other as a solution it just doesn’t work. I try to accept it, but it isn’t fair and ultimately I end up angry or completely deflated and depressed. The letting go part doesn’t work either. The dishes don’t get done, the floor doesn’t get cleaned, the laundry doesn’t get done, nothing gets done, it just gets dirtier. One would think my husband would step up, but he doesn’t even seem to notice. Ultimately I end up having to wash dishes so we can eat or having to clean clothes so me and the children have something to wear. If I don’t pay the bills, well they don’t get paid. What then? Lose our home? Lose our car?

Just in case you are wondering how I find time to type in my blog – I have been working on this post for over an hour. I have been called away by mother duties at least 7 times. The normal call comes from my 3-year old who thinks he will die if he doesn’t get a sippy cup of juice or a snack that very instant. I dream of days when I don’t hear whiny cries the minute I wake up until the minute I go to sleep.

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2 thoughts on “I Wish I Were a Man

  1. motherofeden says:

    Is it being a woman that you hate or being the female parent? Can you imagine… being a woman without kids?? I fantasize about that sometimes… guilty. Oh, the life I would lead!

    Also just have to commiserate with you about the filthy house situation. And I only have two! I suspect we are a living illustration of the dysfunction of living life separate from the village our ancestors had. You are not alone, Dayna… Although I am not working anymore I did work part time when Eden was 2 to 4 and I remember a lot of those feelings. There is a great book written on this very subject you might appreciate called Flux by Peggy Orenstein.

    Sometimes I feel like I’m doing time. And it’s the best time ever to be doing (I really am crazy about my kids as I’m sure you are too!), but I think of it that way because I know that someday the sentence will be over and I have many plans for myself when that time comes…

    Like

    • daynaspirit says:

      I think I hate being a woman and a female parent, but the latter more than the former. I guess though that being a man is just as bad. I recall my last life as a man and I was completely obsessed with sex, alcohol and guilt most of the time. So being male has its own problems. lol I really don’t want to be single and female again. Ugh! I love my children and want them around, I just need more help. That’s all. It would be so wonderful if my husband noticed all the messes I do and cleaned them up promptly.

      Thanks for the book suggestion. I will have to take a look at it. And I can definitely relate to this being like “doing time”.

      Like

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