I feel the same about feminism as I do about all of the things that I vehemently agree with but, since I’m not really into labels, I wouldn’t wear on a t shirt.
For me, feminism always felt like a battle to get to the same point as men — to be equal to men. But I thought something the other day that I would wear on a t shirt I think which has made me feel otherwise. It’s a simple fact and I know everyone already knows it, but:
Women can make people.
There’s a reason we all feel so hopelessly confused about what we want to “do” for the rest of our lives: it’s tough to choose between making up things in one arbitrarily constructed field as opposed to the other. This is a huge lie I’ve just said for some reasons — it is wonderful improving the lives of others through work. But, no job can really compete with making people.
I was fifteen when I was first employed as a babysitter. I spent two after-school afternoons a week watching a 3 year old and a 6 year old. During these afternoons, I was in a continual daze — fighting the fuzzy signs of falling asleep standing up, while the children asked me question after question, getting a feel for the limitations in place that restricted ultimate play this afternoon. I’d make them Nutella sandwiches and play in the sandbox outside. I’d rearrange their train set while they did something that I wasn’t paying attention to. I’d say yes… wait, no. I’d raid their snack cabinet. I’d fight back the urge to suggest putting on TV so that I could sit with bad posture and watch Spongebob, just like I’d be doing at home.
I hated it. They smelled like baby and when I looked at them, I saw a futile being. I couldn’t understand why a person would care to have a baby.
Teenagers shouldn’t be babysitters.
When I look at a child now, I see a miracle. I don’t think it’s a miracle for real — I believe in science, y’all. I think it’s a miracle in the same way that I think the endless Sahara desert is a miracle, or the view of Earth from the moon is a miracle. It’s a miracle because I haven’t experienced it yet and I just cannot imagine one day being human and being big and having a human inside of me and then it plopping out and asking me to make it a sandwich.
That day — if that day ever happens — is going to be one hell of a day. Part of me thinks I’ll cry for all of it, but the other I think wiser part of me knows what will really happen: I’ll cry for part of it, but it’s going to feel so natural and normal that it will just feel like it was meant to happen, the same as any other animal making another animal.
I feel bad for men that they can’t make people the way that we/I can. I know that they’re involved for a brief moment at the very beginning and that once the baby is born they do some work, but they’re not really the main player in the whole creation part. The part where you really want pickles for nine months and then you have a baby. I think I really want to experience that.
I’m starting to realise how crazy it is to be a woman for this reason — and though I don’t think proud is the right word, I feel very strongly feminine and bonded with my lady troops when I think that we all share this superpower.
Is this what brooding feels like?