A Domestic Paradox

I read this blog nearly everyday because it makes me feel warm, cozy and it is so unlike my life. I actually don’t want my life to be like this because it’s not what I want to do or think about most of the time but it has given me some inspiration about stepping outside of my own creative box and trying something else. The funny thing is, while I’m trying on this other way of creating, a small part of me feels like I’m wasting my time (unless I can use what I’m making in a practical way.) I feel like I should be reading or writing or planning for my class or fixing one of the many broken down or falling apart items in my home or out making my voice be heard for change! But I also have found that in making things with my hands, I learn something new, and it gives me a sense of completion that I don’t necessarily get from writing, as I can’t really show my writing in the same way or with the same instant response or frankly with the same respect.

I have been sewing quite a bit lately but NEVER with a pattern. I’m not sure why. Then it turns into something someone else has done or maybe I just don’t want someone to tell me how to create. I’ve never read a book on writing, I just read writers I like and then write. Just like I see bags and hats I like and then I cut and sew. Back to the point: I said I read this lovely blog, which just happened to have a review of Jane Brocket’s new book, The Gentle Art of Domesticity that was also somewhat reviewed at the magazine where I am a columnist. This idea of domesticity and feminism: I often read blogs or talk with friends who are domestic centered and part of me understands that need, the other part of me feels like it is creating a step in the direction of focusing our lives only on our homes, husbands or partners and children. And I sometimes think, “are we living in the freakin’ 50’s here? But in all honesty, almost everything I do is because of my child but that isn’t so much the case for my husband. I let him pretty much take care of himself. I don’t make him special things to eat for lunch or have dinner ready at six or any other time for that matter. If I’m making food, I’ll ask him if he wants some but my goal isn’t to create something for him because it’s my duty or because it’s just part of my day. I can see doing it out of love and it’s been known to happen but dammit, I’m the bread winner around these parts anyway. And about keeping the house clean, that is for company sake only! I almost feel like it’s my job to show my daughter that I’m not the one who does or should do the cooking and cleaning anyway but that it should be a shared experience.

Anyway, I don’t really have any answers or if these ideas about “home” are moving us forward or backward or anywhere at all, But I just listened to the BBC conversation about Jane Brocket’s new book and I thought what a paradox it is to be female especially now with the current trend to return to the hearth fires of cooking, mending and home- creating. And how much of a paradox my life is. I would never call myself domestic and I all but claw against its stereotype but I do read “domestic” blogs because they are so very relaxing in their simplistic topics of what color of thread goes well with denim or how to best mix in egg whites only. I know this might be a generalization but after all the struggles that seem to be my day after day, it is what I come home to read – well along with Slate and Salon and Air America and NPR.

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One Response to “A Domestic Paradox”

  1. comeonmyselector Says:

    i have a blog here now!

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