Monday, August 18, 2008

Girls, let's think about this...

I'm geniunely perplexed as to how many readers actually subscribe to magazines splashed with cover lines like:

How to get him to REALLY like you....

478594875 billion ways to please your man...

How to get him to commit...

How to know if he's into you...

What guys REALLY want...


Obviously, given the currently nauseating plethora of women's self-love-help books/articles/podcasts/blogs/blah blah blah, I'm inclined to think there is a healthy, or unhealthy, demand.

Seriously? Do you really need an article to tell you if he's into you? Do you need a self-help cheat sheet to navigate the treacherous waters of simple biology, primarily revolving around that ever present single organ of male anatomy too often confused as a substitute for the brain? Are you honestly cuddling up with your reading glasses at night, tucked in with the latest issue of advice on how to continually feed the never ending vacuum of, "You're just not good enough...yet."

It might surprise, even shock, those who aren't too familiar with my typical rants that while I may be a content stay-at-home mother, proud enlistee of the Mormon faith, card carrying member of the happy-to-make-my-man-a-good-meal wives' club...I am a true feminist at heart. I wear it on my sleeve happily, right along with an apron, occasionally parading around the house barefoot and pregnant.

I love women. I love womanhood. I still toss and turn at night, racked with confusion as to why it took us approx 8,000 or so years to realize we actually deserved the right to vote. Baffled that in today's age we still OBSESS over getting men to realize how "priceless" we really are. Irritated that the word "feminine", when called into comparison with its counterpart adjective "masculine", still carries connotations of weakness or inadequacy. There is nothing weak about me. Or my daughters.

In fact, it is through the only truly monopolized capacity of my sex - motherhood - that my deepest strengths lie. Give me a corporate ladder, I can climb it. Introduce me to a sport, I could master it. Give me an education, I'll pass your test. Keep me on a strict diet and exercise regime, I'll be the next PussyCat doll (as long as legs approximately 23 inches in length can be considered "the new sexy").

Give me life, to grow within my own, and I'm a little scared. Give me the responsibility of being that life's center of existence during its most formative years, and I feel intimidated. Give me the burden of sacrifice, of unfortunate physical postpartum alteration, and I'll whimper a prayer. Give me this title of mother, or woman, in a world that still often views it as sub-manhood. Let my battle scars (ie stretch marks, sagging boobs, incoherent premenstrual tirades) be considered unattractive or indicative of "used" goods. I'll do it. Because, let's face it, I am feminine. I am strong.

Besides, somebody's got to be able to sit and have a good, saggy-old-cancerous boob cry with Elizabeth Edwards after her husband planted his pecker in "greener" pastures.

7 comments:

Your Mama said...

O.K...when I gave you that pep talk after you left for your first semester in college away from home and you whimpered one time too many about the "stress" of managing your own finances and juggling school - I put my foot down and told you "I don't raise wimps. If you can't hack this you are never going to survive being a wife and mother!"
I couldn't be more proud of the strong woman you are. I'm so happy you feel empowered and comfortable in the most honorable of all "professions", motherhood. Thanks for getting it right.
MOM

Joan said...

Could not adore the Rachel rant more...especially when centered around a topic I am equally passionate about: Motherhood and femininity in general.
The quest for femininity is not about some contest to prove that women are superior to men. Men have strengths that are inherent to men and women have strengths that are inherent to women.
Women are mothers...plain and simple. We are nurturers--compassion filled, sensitive, caring, kind, and charitable creatures with an intense drive and desire to love. Simply love. And so I wear the badge of Motherhood along side you with pride and consider my stewardship an ennobling honor.
ps--tell your Mother it is the same Richard and Linda Eyre that wrote the books she loves so much. They are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G people with some of the most incredibly well rounded children I have ever met. They no question practice what they preach.

Daron and Jamee said...

Women are here to support men and men are here to support women. Together we are one right? So without men we are not complete. There is no greater race. I agree, femininity is not finding what we are better than men at, but doing what we do best while supporting our men so that they can perform their best. Well said Rae.

Daron and Jamee said...

Ok Rachel. Seriously? A whale? National Geographic? I hope you know what I am talking about! Stop discrediting yourself. You are a hot mama of two precious littles and one Lucky man..go ahead-eat another cakester (what that is) you can afford it!

Jme

P.s. Are you at the ward camp out??

Daron and Jamee said...

(whatever that is)

Its late for me. excuse my typing errors please.

JAMIE_DALLAS said...

Really good one Rae!! You're such an amazing writer, I always look forward to reading, keep them coming!!

A. Man said...

Ok Ladies! Here is the male's perspective... we'll do it step by step even...

The intro is already seeping with latent man-haterism. There is an obvious rage and it must be directed somewhere! Why not at the white, American male?! Sure! Why don't we set quotas on magazine covers and an equal portion of men and women related topics?

We next proceed into rallying the she-troops to stand up for themselves and indirectly, hate men! After all, it's the men who don't think we're good enough. It's the men who refuse to accept us. It's the men who force us into starvation and cheat on us if we are overweight...

There also appears to be a hang-up on the word 'feminine'. Weak? Inadequate? It is not man who suggests that, in fact I, along with my knuckle-dragging kin, would associate 'tender' or 'compassionate' instead.

From here, there is a proud declaration of womanhood. I like it. I even like womans. I like their strength and capacities.

However, the grand feminine finale is where the latent man-haterism really surfaces... after all, as a woman, no matter the man and the noble self sacrifice of the oppressed wife--bearing children, cooking meals, dutifully offering sex--the husband, just like ALL husbands eventually do, will move on to greener pastures.

But no, this is about woman pride, NOT about bashing men--directly or indirectly... VIVA LA FEME!