If you are a man, consider yourself a gift. Most men (in my opinion) live a much easier life than women. Now there are exceptions to the rule, but being born a male is truly something special. I wouldn’t give the world for the experience of carrying a child or being the main one to nurture our kids, but outside of that, females have it hard. What makes me think this? A few nights ago, as I was working in our kitchen, Lee was fast asleep (as a woman, I don’t need sleep), & heard a knocking outside. It wasn’t a knock on the door, it sounded more like a knocking on the side of the house. Concerned it was someone playing a prank or an animal, I awakened Lee to tell him I heard something. As a man, I feel he should be the first to know, the first responder of our home. His reply was he thought he heard something earlier. All this happened after 9pm, which was a little late in the evening for him to be walking around the inside of our home lol listening for a noise. He walks through quickly & goes back to bed without a solution. I heard it again & told him before he could close his eyes & he says in an illbox tone, “what do you want me to do about it?” Every single time I have woke that man up to investigate a noise, he gets ill. I’m sure he’s not the only man to do so. I don’t know what your experience was like if you raised babies, but mine went down like this-I stayed home with all three kids, nursed them, fed them for every feeding because they were hard-headed like their Daddy & wouldn’t take a bottle. This meant I had to wake up all during the night to feed. Was I ill, yes I was. Did I get visibly upset with him, sometimes, but the difference was I did this multiple times a night & never got a full nights sleep. I hear noises outside all the time, but only poke the bear once every six-eight months if that. Not a ridiculous amount of times. A little compassion would be nice!
Maybe it’s a southern thing, I really don’t have enough interactions with people from different areas outside the south to know either way, but men are spoiled. Again, let me reiterate that this is my opinion. I hope there are men self-sufficient, I suppose the single ones are & have to be (if their Mama’s aren’t still living). Women hold so many responsibilities just in the home. Most are the sole chefs, accountants, receptionists, taxi drivers, house cleaners, caregivers, & wear so many more hats. A man can come in from work after having slept 10 hours solidly & peacefully the night prior & fall asleep as soon as he kicks back the recliner. A woman comes in from work to start or manage supper, take the kids to various practices, pay a few bills, referee the kids, then has to clean the kitchen, make arrangements for everyone else for the next day while Daddy is fast asleep. Do you think the woman got a full nights sleep the night prior, let me answer this for you, no! Women, historically, have a harder time sleeping than their male counterparts. Doctors say it’s because of hormones. I say it’s because of hormones & because we have so many more things to do that keep our minds in overdrive. Anytime I’ve ever been to family gatherings, who are the first people to be in the recliners after a meal nodding off, men! Who worked the hardest preparing the meal, shopping for the meal, unloading the car, & then guess who cleans the kitchen, women! What an injustice! If you don’t have these experiences, more power to ya, please reveal your secrets! You have unlocked the code most women since the beginning of time have wished they could. I’m no feminist (obviously), but daggum men, step up your game!
Am I writing a personal letter publicly to my husband, no! He knows exactly how I feel, I am merely venting to a larger sized audience. When I need an appointment with my dentist or a mammogram, I call myself & setup these appointments. When hubby needs an appointment of any kind, I get asked to schedule it. Then if it’s at a time not feasible for him, I have to call back. How ridiculous is all of this? I can see me asking Lee to schedule my yearly pap exam. Women have nothing else going on, what is one more thing. Being a secretary was a personal aspiration of mine outside of working at the Food King grocery store-back in my days of youthfulness, it was Lowe’s Food. I loved the way the cash register keys sounded when the girls waited on me when I went in to purchase a carton of Vantage cigs for my Mama & Daddy at the old age of 6! In the 80’s, most women worked as secretaries or in a mill. My Mama did both, but as I was growing up, she mainly was a secretary, then became an office manager as her last paying job before retirement. One of her jobs when I was around age 7 was with a trucking company. It was a large building that housed several women & their desks. Each dark brown desk was equipped with a telephone (my first love), a file cabinet, a typewriter, my favorite was the desktop calculator, pens & paper galore, a huge desktop calendar (to write hubby’s appointments on), the ever important ashtray & let’s not forget the dark brown paneling because that only added to the oppression of women-picked our by a man no less! If women are nothing more than objects meant to work 24/7, then they need to be more depressed with brown paneling & brass door knobs. Then you add in the packs of cigarettes being smoked in an 8 hour shift & you’ve got yourself the makings of a country music song! The office would sometimes look like the VFW on a Friday night it was so thick with smoke. I despised the smoke, but I wanted to operate that telephone, calculator, & typewriter. It was the buttons. Mama could fly with that calculator, I wanted to be just like her! I also loved sound the typewriter made when pressing the keys, I loved the texture of the push-button keys on the phone, I loved that you could put a person on hold-I could not do that at our house. Our phones were rotary dial phones (if you’re a young person, you had to stick your finger in the appropriate number & turn the dial to call someone). I could press mute at my Mama’s office! She knew shorthand, now that was a gift. Mama was a master at it like she is at all things, & my sister Jodie who is 9 years older than me but looks 20 years younger than me took it in high school & was a master at it as well. Shorthand was phased out by the time I got to high school, just my luck! Why did they do shorthand? To write down what “the gift” was telling them in a quick manner so the woman could type it up because “the gift’s” hands were too busy smoking a cigar most likely. Being a secretary was glamorous in my eyes, now I know different! My dream did somewhat come true, I am still pushing buttons both literally & figuratively! I love operating our cash registers at The Berry Patch, I’m almost as fast as my Mama was on her desktop calculator.
Getting back to household chores, it has been my experience that women typically do the cooking & planning of meals. I giggle sometimes thinking about Lee worrying about whether I have eaten or not. As women, we worry about all the people living with us whether or not their nutritional needs are being met. Do the men worry about such? No, they are too busy sleeping! Most men never worry about the baseboards getting clean, the bathrooms being all sparkly, cleaning out the pantry or wiping down the cabinets, washing the sheets, curtains, the list goes on & on. Do I belong to a club accosting men for being men? No, I’m simply pointing out differences in men & women. After big meals at my parents house, we ladies say, “I wish I was a man”. So why don’t we take a stand & just not wash the dishes, plan the meals, vacuum, stop it all? I really don’t know why I’ve never personally done this. I do enjoy cooking, organizing, grilling, but it all gets sort of robotic because it is done so frequently by the female sex that the enjoyment gets sucked right out the window. I would certainly never hang a wreath under a billboard with a friend lifting me up in a bin box like Lee did in this picture. Just one of the reasons I love him!
Please don’t think I am giving Lee a hard time, the above goes for most of the ladies I know. Lee works very hard, often leaving before the sun comes up & not getting home until well after dark. I am not perfect by any means. I am extremely anal about most things. If something is crooked, it must be fixed immediately, I don’t like overhead lights on whereas Lee does, we fight about whether the big lights or the lamps should be on all the time, I have no tolerance for foolishness (outside of Jack), I complain all the time (obviously lol), & I have gotten very upset with Lee before because he washed clothes (stupid, right?). Don’t get me wrong, being a “gift” comes with a certain amount of assumed responsibilities just as it does being female. The physical labor men do on a day basis is often more strenuous in some ways. I could never do some of the things my husband does like put together an irrigation system, change a carburetor on a tractor, kill a snake, or crawl under a house. Being a certain gender comes with assumed roles. I am okay with some of those roles for both males & females, but I do think the house rules need to change & it is my hope that the younger generation can do that. Everything inside the house should not be left up to the woman, as everything outside the house shouldn’t be left up to the man, there should be shared responsibilities. Ava (our daughter), remember this! Maybe this wasn’t a note for Lee, but for Ava instead! Will I continue doing all of the above, yes! Will I continue to wish I were a man, yes! Will anything be changed because of this post, no, & I’m okay with that. I’ll carry on attempting to hide my grays unlike men, who gray very handsomely yet another thing men have been so graciously gifted with. So in the end, I guess you could say we are all “gifts”. Men, how about making an extra special “gift” for your wife & dust the baseboards tonight!