bring home the bacon fry it up in a pan


The 1980’s perfume commercial for Enjoli had these lyrics ” I can bring home the bacon, and fry it up in the pan”. I used to sing that song over and over and over again. There was also a local commercial for some fur coat store that stayed in my head ( but that’s another story). I never knew what that Enjoli commercial meant. I guess I thought it was weird to eat bacon for dinner. My mom was a working mom, so I wasn’t aware that this message was that a women can work and still come home and take care of the home and children. I spent the 70’s and 80’s playing with Barbie and she had jobs.I saw my teachers at school and they had jobs, I saw waitresses and the checkout girl (before UPC’s) and I wanted to be a checkout girl when I grew up, the cash register seemed so cool.
All around me ladies worked. I guess I always thought I would work, I was always planning on college and work. I never pictured a family, in my life but that happened too.
I left work and stayed home with the kids. I was not the bacon maker now but I was the bacon fryer.
When you have never stayed home with your kids life seems awesome- you don’t have to dress up, you can read, and watch tv and surf the internet. You can sleep a little later. You can lunch and wander around Target. But that’s not how life is for me. At first it was, but then the reality that we were on one income set in, and I missed my extra money to spend. I also went on to have a second child and being at home with a baby and a toddler was a very trying time for me.
I love my children and I love my time to take them to lessons and the library, for free play and snuggly stay in your pjs all day kind of days, but I also loved feeling like I had a purpose. I know my purpose is to love and mold and teach my children, and I am cool with that. I think I do okay with that. My purpose is not to clean up and pick up, to do laundry all the time, to clean up toys. All my years in finance and my Masters degree did not make me prepared to drive my children all over the place for lessons and doctors and playdates. Yes I know I am extremely blessed to have this opportunity and I love having a flexible schedule now that my kids are older, but I do not have any sense of self worth. I know it and my husband knows it. I liked working. I liked being helpful and using my mind. I just like working and being busy. I like being needed as part of a larger group. I don’t get that satisfaction from mopping the kitchen and making the grocery list. And I know other people love mothering full time. And that’s fine. I think in this big vast world we can all have a different calling and need.
I don’t think I would ever want to work full time because my children are very important to me and I like being able to be there for them when they have off school or when their schools need helpers, but I know I do need more in my life than being a glorified housekeeper can provide. When both of my kids are in full day school I am going back to get another Masters degree and then back to work. The money will be nice to have, but mainly so my kids can see me being a proud accomplished mama. I want them to see how some people need work in addition to family to use their gifts and talents and to help others. I want them to see my happy and not just humdrum because out of all the chores I accomplished that day and all the places I drove and all the school things I took care of, not one person noticed or cared, because in this family everything I do is not valued. I want to be valued again. And I don’t feel the slightest bit guilty for saying that.

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