"What is YOUR Major Malfunction, Numbnuts!?"

I'll tell you exactly what it is.

I was born and bred to be a StayAtHomeMom. I was not bred expecting to go out and have a job and leave my (one) kid at the babysitter. I learned to cook by the time I was 8. By 10 I could cook a complete meal. By 12 I could do it over an open fire. I know how to separate laundry. I can wash clothes by hand if I have to, using a scrub brush to get the knees clean, although washing them in a machine is SO MUCH easier. I know how to run a household on a tight budget.

I enjoy being pregnant, breastfeeding and walking around with no shoes on. I like making dinner from scratch. I make a mean-ass chicken soup, cornbread stuffing, roast-anything. My greens are to die for. When I have the time my home is fairly neat. I enjoy redecorating. I love the Parents Association, volunteering in the school. I like running fundraisers (even though I bitch and complain). I like children. Especially my own.

Left to my own devices, I would have happily been barefoot and pregnant, making cookies and cooking dinner.

I don't even track my man when he's out... provided whatever he's doing "stays in Vegas" and he's smart enough not to bring anything--diseases, evidence, love letters--home. Cuz once they cross my doorstep, it's on. Provided I am respected and loved, I trust unconditionally.

When I'm by myself, I can easily entertain myself; I can draw or paint or plant herbs and flowers in the pots on the deck. I can write. When I'm not by myself, I can be fairly funny, I will keep up with current events (well, if I care about them), I look damn good for forty-almost-three, and let's put it this way... it was passed down from my grandmother to my mother to me "A man wants a lady in the home and a whore in the bedroom" and "Always look good in your own home--never let him see you in curlers or coldcream". Though sometimes I break that rule, I admit. But I try.

I don't really need expensive gifts. I mean they're nice and all, but I don't *need* it, and I certainly won't accept them in lieu of genuine affection and respect. You definitely can't buy me off, which is probably why a rich husband wouldn't work for me.

I don't *need* to be rich but I do need to be warm and comfortable, and when I'm cold and uncomfortable I'm a little cranky. (OK, downright evil.) If I'm sick I don't require A LOT of care, just some... and when you're sick or hurting I do everything in my power to make it better. Unless you whine too much and you piss me off.

The only catch to all this is I have an attitude problem and I don't like being bossed around. I wholeheartedly admit to having issues with authority. And if you tell me something like "I'll be home by 7" I hold you to it, and when you don't come home it's not that I care *where* you were, but I care that you broke your word. And if I catch you in a lie your ass is mine... but you have to be pretty stupid to leave yourself open cuz I really don't go snooping. Only if you give me a reason. But I definitely have a temper and if I can't fight you outright I will definitely do a slow burn. But usually I'll fight you outright. And I HATE being ignored. I also hate being questioned and feeling "owned". I also tend to be a night-owl, mainly because it's when the world is quiet and I can hear my Voices.

All-in-all though, I think I'd make a decent StayAtHomeMom. So it pisses me off no end that as a single parent, in order to live comfortably I have to work. And the only jobs I do well in are jobs that recognize and allow that my kid will always come first; I WILL leave early to take him to karate or violin or whatever if I can't find someone else to do it; I will NEVER work weekends and it's a rare night that I'll stay late to do anything. I'll take it home, though, but most companies would rather pay you to be "on location" and waste time, than trust that you'll finish whatever at home from the comfort of your couch.

Not having a job stresses me ONLY because the rent is high, and I have student loans and some credit card debt. Not an AWFUL lot, but enough to stress me. And it's not that I'm frivolous and HAVE to have that coat or those red pumps (though I want them really badly), it's just sometimes I run out of money and have to charge groceries or a winter coat for the Sun. And OK, my fancy Treo. But hey, it helps me keep track of the money I don't have and the things I have to do.

I filed for unemployment the other day. If I could cut down some of the debt I had, I could so live comfortably off of unemployment; when you're happy, you don't NEED to spend money.

Today, I went to the Sun's school to check for last-minute fundraiser orders, I did some personal stuff that I'd brought with me and the principal nicely let me use the fax machine, then I went and helped the Sun make a diorama of our kitchen in a shoebox in his classroom. Then I went to art class with him where they were drawing birds. Carlos the art teacher let me draw a Snow Ptarmigan on some watercolor paper, and if I'm still unemployed on Tuesday when they go back to art, I'm going to go and paint it. I stopped by Bigbear's and ate fish with her and TinyOne (who is SO MUCH LIKE his mother at that age, and I loved her so completely then that I've fallen in love with TinyOne all over again).

Then I came home. Shoefly will pick the boys up on her way home from work (and see, she LIKES to work) and so I'll start pasta in a minute.

So why is it, Mr. O, that I don't have a husband? Is it my attitude problem? Could I choke it back long enough to stay quiet and keep a husband? Could I tolerate "man-isms"?

Not bloody likely.



professor said…
we are just too overwhelming and we don't play the game...I swarm and consume whoever I like...telling them what to do and how to do it (but I'm usually right)and am just too available...but its me and I don't see why I need to change...shit eventually someone will like me for me, so I'll wait patiently...
we are soo much alike its funny cause we really don't talk about personal stuff (with you being so bossy and all)...I too, don't care what they do and where they are...I actually like the peace and quiet when they are out the house...but you better be there when I go to sleep...
*sigh* so why is it, Mr. O that I don't have a husband? see I can/do tolerate "man-isms" cause I really don't care or engage...
I'm convinced its me, myself and I against the world and I'm ok with that...
The Bear Maiden said…

Two peas in a pod, afterall...

That's OK, though. The Fat Lady's Saint Aunt never married and she seems to have a great life.

The upside...we'll probably live really long lives. Poppy's dentist, lived to be 105 and wrote a book... she never married. And I saw another old lady on TV last Sunday am. She lived to be 105. They asked her the secret to her longevity. She said she had three rules: 1.) no smoking 2.) no drinking 3.) no sex.

Milky said…
"...and when you're sick or hurting I do everything in my power to make it better. Unless you whine too much and you piss me off."

I said the exact same thing to my friend three days ago!!!!
Laurie said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said…
WOW! I could have written that post. Well, except for "whatever he's doing 'stays in Vegas'."
The Bear Maiden said…
Hi, Milky!

& Laurie... I honestly believe most men cheat at some point. Hopefully not with you. But I can't spend my time looking for things... I have too many things to do. So I won't go *looking* not out of "trust" but just out of "busy"... and if it "stays in Vegas" it meant he respected me enough to cover his @ss. However... if his dirt follows him home? "It's ON!". And it ain't pretty...
Julie said…
Damn, I have too much too say - I can't get it all together.

Just before I read this I was having one of my typical, long drawn out musings about how the women's movement got it all wrong. Rather than trying to make sure we could do all the things men do, they should have been trying to make sure that all the things we do are more valued - and by valued, I mean paid for!

It pisses me off to no end that traditional women's occupations are devalued so much in our society. Nurses, teachers, various kinds of caretakers get paid less than the counter parts of traditional male occupations. And motherhood doesn't pay at all. Why isn't being a parent considered a profession? It should be.

I really think that people should get paid for having a parent stay home with the kids. It's something that would not only be good for the family, but good for society as a whole. So many things would be better if people had the time to be involved with their children's lives more.

As for you, I think with all you're willing to give a man, and all you're willing to put up with from one, there's no reason why you won't find one. Though, I think you have to be careful about just who you find.

Men who like to be taken care, and who want a woman who won't notice their indiscretions, tend to be controlling and domineering. They want their own way with everything. And, while you're giving, you are no wimp. And you like to be right. And when you're right, you can be rather tenacious. And life shouldn't be a battle.

So I think it's more about whether or not there's a man out there who's right (worthy) of you.

More power to you on being able to deal with the infidelity thing as long as it's not in your face. I too believe that most (not all but most) men will cheat. I think, most women would too if we lived in a society that encouraged, rather than discouraged, women to be really in touch with their sexuality. Basically, I just don't think monogamy is natural. It's a societal construct. So of course people will find themselves drawn towards breaking out of it.

But, I think, for me, the problem with infidelity is two-fold. For one, I can't stand to be lied to. And it's pretty much impossible to cheat without lying. So in one way, I'd be more upset about the lying than the cheating.

Though the cheating would piss me off too. Because, well, hell, I'd enjoy a little action with someone new - but I don't do it because my spouse and I have agreed not to. So the idea that he went and got some when I had the integrity to forsake it, would irritate me.

I mean if you and I decided that we both needed to give up eating chocolate cake and were going to support each other in doing it, and I was making the effort to not only forsake chocolate cake myself, but give you encouragement and support in not doing it, and then I found out you had just decided, to hell with it, you felt like chocolate cake and you were going to have it everyday and just not tell me about it. I'd be annoyed. We'd still be friends, but I sure as hell wouldn't get involved in any kind of nutritional support with you again.

Same thing with a man who cheats. We could be friends, but the relationship would be over.

Of course, I have more to say, but I've rambled on enough already.
The Bear Maiden said…
Well, don't get me wrong. I don't *accept* cheating. I agree that monogamy is not natural--some animals "mate for life" but I don't believe that humans do naturally. We *choose* to. And if both humans choose to take that vow, then they should both honor it. Hell, I can cheat too. Cheating is easy. Choosing to be monogamous is work, and if I can work at it, then you can, too. Cuz I'll be honest--I'm good at cheating. I am an extremely good liar, and can do so with a straight face and keep my whole structure of the story intact. And never deviate. Which is why I 1.) choose not to do it, and 2.) it's why I don't worry about it. Because I notice EVERYTHING. I was only ever blindsided once, because I was in love and was trusting. But hindsight is 20/20, and "fool me once" and all that. And I'm mildly psychic and a damn good body language reader. And I've been "the other woman" so I know the shit men tell you. So you have to be GOOD to pull one over on me... and if you put that much effort in it than hey, Mazel Tov. Cuz if I catch you it's a whole other ball game, and once I catch you I'll never ever forget it. And at this point/age in my life I'd probably cut you out right away. But I'm not going to waste time looking for it, is all I'm sayin'....

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