Monday, August 25, 2008

Daddy's Little Architect

I know several bloggers more eloquent than I have quite rationally ranted against the horribly sexist clothing that seems to be the only option for our daughters. I join them in their fury--it's MADDENING that the only options for our girls are frilly, pink, and princess-themed.

But, while I remain frilly-averse, I've sort of gotten used to the pink thing. On the one hand, monkey girl looks super cute in hot pink. But also, she's got a firey personality and I'm certain that she's wearing pink with a deep sense of irony.

What continues to really get me, though, is that I can't find much for my little girl that isn't princess themed. This pisses me off on so many levels. First, my daughter is five months old--she quite literally has her whole life ahead of her. She has nothing but potential, and yet the best that we can hope for, apparently, is that she grow up to be a helpless, defenseless, submissive, PRINCESS. That she aspire to nothing more than waiting idly by for a knight in shining armor who will come and sweep her off her feet. And if that prince never comes, well, I guess we're supposed to believe she doesn't live happily ever after? That her life is somehow incomplete?

Are you fucking kidding me, people?

So, because I've had it, I went on a rant to a poor unsuspecting soul who had the audacity to buy a bib with a picture of a frog prince on the front and which said "princess" across the top. (Sorry, mom.)

And, right after my rant, I started to mentally go through all of the bibs and onesies we've gotten and realized that, while I have a few for sweet potato that say things like "daddy's little helper," or "dad's team," none that were bought specifically for monkey girl had her as anything but passive and submissive.*

So, I went online tonight and bought her this. I'm thinking of getting a whole damn clothing line of my own to match--no princess themes allowed. Who's with me?

*Yes, I do of course dress monkey girl in some of the other clothes. But I know that they weren't intended for her, and the intent still irks me, even if I'm working around it on my own.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Cosmic want ad

As I think anyone who’s been reading knows, since the stickies were born, I’ve struggled quite a bit with this whole work/life balance issue. And, I was talking to my friend C last night and telling her how conflicted I’ve been feeling about being back at work and about I can’t seem to figure out what I really want. (Do I want to just go part time? Look for another job? Stick it out and just set clearer boundaries? Etc.)

She said that when she was struggling through some similar issues, she read a book that suggested writing a cosmic want ad—a list of all of the things you want out of life, no holds barred. (She included “have clear skin,” for example, on hers.) She explained that it was a really cathartic exercise for her, that it helped her sort through some things, and that, surprisingly, she’s gotten almost all of them.

So, in lieu of a real update, which I promise will be forthcoming (August has been a NIGHTMARE at work, but is finally starting to settle down, so I’ll be able to get back online a bit more), here is my cosmic want ad.

Okay, universe, your turn. Now let’s see what you can do!


I want a job that pays what I make now (or more ☺), where I enjoy as much responsibility and respect as I have, but where I have to work no more than 60 percent time.
I want to have enough money saved that monkey girl and sweet potato never want for anything, can go to college wherever they want, and so that hubby and I don’t have to stress in our retirement.
I want to not have to worry about money.
I want to get back in shape.
I want to find a haircut that I just love.
I want to find some kick-ass shoes and get rid of my boring old ones.
I want to get back into the classroom for at least another few years before the end of my career.
I want monkey girl and sweet potato to know that, despite whatever pressure they might feel from society, they can do whatever they want and whatever they set their minds to.
I want monkey girl and sweet potato to grow up happy and healthy, and I want them to know and to feel with every fiber of their being how loved they are, how special they are, and how lucky we feel to have them in our lives.
I want monkey girl and sweet potato to grow up knowing that it’s more important to be nice, thoughtful, giving, and caring of others than it is to be financially successful.
I want monkey girl and sweet potato to know what a great dad they have, and to know how much I love him.
I want to learn how to curb my temper and not take my moods out on the people I love the most.
I want monkey girl to grow up in a household where she feels removed from all of the societal pressure for her to look and act a certain way. Ditto for sweet potato.
I want to be an example for monkey girl and sweet potato of a strong and independent woman, and I want them both to have respect for all of the women in our family who have worked so hard for the good of others.
20 years from now, I want to remember what it feels like to walk through the door after a day at work and see my babies’ faces light up, as if there was nothing they wanted more in the world than to see their mom.
I want to make time to go to on vacation with my family every summer, and to do nothing but spend time together.
I want my parents to see monkey girl and sweet potato graduate from college and get married, should they choose to do so.
I want hubby to know that there’s nobody I’d rather spend my life with.
I want my brother to know how much he’s meant in my life, and I want him to play a big part in my kids’ lives.
I want to learn to let go.
I want to make sure I don’t let my busy schedule get in the way of my close friendships, which mean the world to me.
I want the courage to surrender my own ambition, without compromising myself, and to never look back.

What would your cosmic want ad look like?