My mother, love her to death, is not very domestic. When my brothers and I were growing up she didn't work outside the home for a variety of reasons (that I won't be delving into here) but that didn't mean she spent her days cleaning and cooking and decorating our home.
My mother cooked because her family had to eat. Likewise she did laundry because we needed clean underwear. She didn't subscribe to Better Homes & Gardens nor did she actually garden. And that's okay. My mother is her own person. But growing up, especially as I reached adolescence, I began to want to acquire some of those domestic skills and talents I never saw my mother perform. I idolized the mother of one of my childhood friends. Her house was immaculate, we ate hot cereal for breakfast anytime I slept over not cold cereal like at my house, and she was always making all of her meals from scratch. No kraft mac and cheese for them.
M's mother by the way, is a domestic queen. She's taught me a lot about cookware and the proper way to pronounce mache. Heck, she taught me what mache was. I digress...
Freshman year of college I subscribed to Real Simple magazine. Yes, you read that correctly. While all my suite mates were reading Cosmo and Seventeen I was devouring the pages of Real Simple. I loved all the organizational tips and tricks. I drooled over the "How to make a gourmet meal that your kids will actually eat in 30 minutes" articles and positively went nuts over features like "Ten basics every mom needs in her working wardrobe".
I was (er, am) a bit of an odd duck. Martha Stewart was my hero. Until she went to prison that is... but even then I forgave her. Because she taught me fifteen ways to use an old dryer sheet around my home... well my dorm room.
This isn't to say that I wasn't all "I am woman hear me roar" in college. I was. Women's Studies 101 changed my life. I mean that literally. I was raised in a very conservative, evangelical household in the Bible Belt south. In college I poured over the writings of Betty Friedan and her compatriots and became a staunch feminist.
One who liked to organize her bathroom tissue rolls. If I, at times, felt or saw anything contradictory about those roles then, I certainly do not now. I see no reason why I can't celebrate my organizational and domestic prowess while simultaneously pursuing gender equality in my relationship and a successful career outside of the home.
Which brings me to these past couple months (nearly three!) of unemployment/fun-employment/forced domesticity I've been living. It's been tough. I won't lie to you. At first, as with all new things, it was exciting! and fun! and relaxing! But recently it's become well, long. And somewhat tiresome.
Please don't see this as me complaining. Because I'm not trying to. I recognize how fortunate we are that I could leave my job in Philadelphia and we could afford to move to Madison together rather than having to do long-distance (again. ugh.) because M's salary wouldn't support us both. Plus the dog and cat of course.
But I'm so very ready for a new challenge. More specifically a job. I would love to be back in the workplace learning new skills and working long hours and worrying over meeting my first six months probationary goals. Would love it. Perhaps it would be different if M and I had children. Then I would see my work in our home as actually contributing to some greater, noble thing. But we don't. Hell, we're not even married. Which makes me that woman. You know, the one who lives off of her boyfriend and doesn't work. Yeah...
If I thought I actually had readers I'd see this post as something of a pathetic job wanted ad sent to the cosmic void that is the internet. But because I'm safely a little "nobody" in the bloggy world I feel alright putting this all out there.
So come on Madison, let's find me a job!
Happy Friday! I'll be back shortly with a round up of things I've been digging this week.