Friday, September 15, 2006
Snapshot of Now
It's slippery, this slope we've slid into domesticity. I realized this morning, watching from the car as my husband dragged trash cans to the edge of our driveway, that we are a cliche. Husband and wife, 1.5 children. I cook and clean and stay home with our son. He works, comes home with witty stories from his day that he tells me over my latest dinner concoction. I nod appropriately, my eyes balancing their focus between him to our son, watching for flying food or spoons, or signs of distaste for my cooking.

I woke up this morning thinking of how nice it'll be to wash our sheets, for them to smell fresh and clean and feel warm on my hands as I spread them over our mattress. By the time my son goes down for his nap, I'm making a mental catalog of our kitchen cabinets and pantry and fridge. What can I make for dinner?

The sink is clogged. The trash smells. The cat pee'd outside of her litterbox. There's a spider behind our toilet. All these fall under his responsibilities. Without realizing it, and without any provocation from family or society, we've given ourselves over to a sort of old fashioned existence, the 1950's cliche of men and women living together and raising children.

But more surprising, is that I really don't care. I'm quite happy with the way things are. Though I could snake a sink or squash a spider with a wad of scrunched up toilet paper, I don't particularly want to. And I'll gladly choose loading and unloading dishes over lugging around garbage bags full of chicken parts and The Boss's leftovers.

And would I rather work eight to nine hours a day than spend time with my son? Absolutely not.

It's just interesting to me that this is where we've landed. Where we are, for the moment. Someplace I hadn't thought much about - an existence I hadn't ever thought I'd be settled into. Though, I know that time is going to have it's way with us, and in ten years (heck, even in ten months) we may have slid to another existence entirely. The kids will grow up and I'm sure I'll be working again and life won't be as simple as what to make for dinner and Honey can you take out the trash?


But for now, this is interesting. This place. I'm taking mental snapshots to remember it by when we've left. (Though, in those, I'm wearing an apple-red apron with nails to match and my hair is perfectly coiffed. I think I'm allowed a little creative license here.)

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6 Comments:

Blogger Darkmind said...

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Blogger dillyweed said...

Isn't it funny how we fall into these patterns? I love being home with my son even though it can be hard some days, to cope with the ins and outs of parenting while my husband gets to have real world adult interactions. I like how you wrote the perspective you have right now. :) It made me think about mine too - in a thankful and content way that I needed to be reminded of. You're the best, Mella.

Blogger me said...

Enjoy every moment of it. Time goes by in a blink of an eye.

Blogger Susan D. said...

There is a reason this structure became a cliche - it can and often does work. No shame in letting it work for your family!

Blogger david C said...

we have ended up in the same place, and we are not bothered by it at all. The hardest part of the day is when we are apart and I am not with my two ladies....

Who said "old fashioned" can't be the new modern? And besides, we are happy to raise our own instead of trusting it to others... Oh yeah, I go to work, but Jennifer has the harder job, for sure.

Blogger LJ said...

You know what, Mella? I had a lot of objections to married life (for myself, I mean)...but one of them was not that settling into you-do-this and i-do-that routines. And maybe there's a reason why the man squashes bugs and the women cook. Like most (not all)men never learned to cook. And they don't get as bent out of shape about bug removal. If you happen to be an enterprising woman who likes doing the traditional guy-stuff, or a man who loves to cook or sew, fine, God Bless. But otherwise, some arrangements are not actually backward - they're simply expedient.

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