I have written, and re-written, and re-written this. The previous incantations are all in the trash, sitting there on my desktop, mocking me. Mocking my fear.
I am afraid to write this. I am afraid to post it. I am afraid to even say it out loud.
There isn’t a place in Feminism (the movement, not the people within it) for me. That is remarkably hard to type.
I am a stay at home mother. I spend my days in yoga pants, homeschooling two small children. I rely on my spouse, a man, for income. I go to Starbucks in flip flops. A trip to the grocery store alone is a small vacation.
Feminism is all about Leaning In now. A woman’s place is in the boardroom. And I am not living up to that goal right now. I traded in a job, a career, for late night diaper changes and singing the ABC song during circle time.
And Feminism is leaving me behind.
Often I see posts and comments online deriding stay at home mothers. I see things talking about how boring it must be, and how women who are at home can not be fulfilled with those choices, and we are part of the problem.
But I thought Feminism was about me having a choice. I thought the goal of the movement was to allow women to make their own choices for their lives, from pregnancy to careers, to where to live, to who to bank with, all the choices we get to make. I’m not home because I am forced to be. I am at home by choice.
Let me say that again.
I. Am. At. Home. By. Choice.
I needed a break from the rat race that is working. I needed time to breathe and be in this season of my life. I was tired and emotionally wrung out, and I wanted some peace in my life. I found that, at home. I am happier at home. I like being at home.
I had plans to go back to work. I had plans to put Sprout into kindergarten, and go to work. I stumbled onto homeschooling, and then I had Pudge, and I realized that there is, right now, no other place I would rather be.
Yeah, some days I get bored. Somedays I am so tired of The Wheels on the Bus and Itsy Bitsy Spider. BUT.
The good days outnumber the bad. The moments in the sunshine, playing in the grass, the moments in the rain, jumping in puddles, the lazy warmth of afternoon when we put a movie on and snuggle on the couch, those moments all outweigh the bad tenfold.
I thought Feminism was about choices. I thought it was about letting each woman make her own choices for her own life without interference from anyone.
So why then, is the focus on pushing me to work? Why is the focus on putting me back into a career and a job and a life I do not want? Why can’t I be at Feminist and be at home? Why can’t I be a Feminist and homeschool? Why must I Lean In, when all I want to do is Slow Down?
Is there room for me within Feminism?