Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Project 31 Day 12: What exhausts me

Day 12.  Write about what wears you out as a woman.

What's currently wearing me out is this to-puke-or-not-to-puke cat battle. (see previous post)

But what wears me out as a woman? Expectations. 

We live in the world that wants to wipe out gender roles. I can understand that. So, as a woman in the 21st century, I am expected to  take charge, put my career first,  wait to have children, wait to get married . . but wait, we've evolved beyond the primitive restraints of marriage, right? Move far away from home, travel extensively, be passionate about saving the world, be a health-food fanatic, vegetarian, or vegan, workout so I'm super trim and buff, dress like a supermodel. Because I'm a modern, intelligent, independent woman, right? 

Then you have the other spectrum . . . As a woman, I basically emulate June Cleaver in every aspect, cook from scratch, raise oh so many children, be involved in Sunday morning classes, teach children's church classes, do Bible studies, and bring the best casserole to church pot lucks, live next door to my family, always be perfectly pressed, and have dinner waiting on husband in a prestine home so I can pamper him the moment he walks in the door. Because I'm a good, domesticated, Christian woman, right? 

First off, I'm honestly not making fun of or criticizing either spectrum. I promise, I'm not. 
I so admire people who are driven and committed enough to be vegans and keep up an intense daily workout routine. I am amazed by wives and mothers who are absolutely incredible at caring for their families. It's awesome when anyone finds a career they love and are committed to.  I admit, I'm jealous of the woman who makes every outfit look like a superstar. Women who are so committed to Christ and His work that they are prominent in their Church Body or even move overseas in ministry astound me. But I can't be all of those things at once.  I just feel like I'm supposed to fit in one cubby or another--not a mixture of the two, and if I can't fit, I'm wrong.

I'm a Christian woman who wants to become involved in her new church and minister to the community, but I can't do every activity because of scheduling conflicts. Does that make me a bad Christian? 
I want to travel all over the world, but I just haven't yet. Does that mean I'm never going anywhere? 
Sometimes, when crunched for time, I cook recipes out of a box. Does that mean I'm poisoning my husband, that I'm a terrible cook, or that I don't believe in health or animal rights? 
If I live only 40 minutes from my parents and 20 minutes from my in-laws, does that mean I'll never be independent?
 I was married at 22, does that mean I threw my future away for some retro ideal?

I married at 22 because I loved a man and didn't want to spend my life with anyone else. 
I want  a career that I love, and that may be in an office, that may be as a novelist, that may be as a stay-at-home mom. They're all fabulous. 
I want so badly to be involved in my church and to make a difference in the world either by traveling, ministering, or donating. No little act of love is insignificant, even if it doesn't end up on CNN. 
Home is wherever God places us, and that may be the city I grew up in, even if that's not my ideal location and I want to move across the country or across the globe. 
I am trying to be healthier and create a regular workout routine, but it is ok if I'm not skinny or don't make everything organic. Are those things great? Yes. But they're not the only way to live a full and healthy life. 

God made me to be only one person, and the only expectations I need to worry about fitting inside are His my own. 



  1. I know what exhausts me is trying to fit everything and everyone into my schedule. It likely has something to do that we as women always put ourselves last.

    Great post!

  2. I really enjoyed your take on day 12. I feel the same way sometimes! I am so glad this project has led me to great blogs like yours :)


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