January has been extremely germy for our family. I don’t quite get why, with the mild climate here on the central CA coast, we still get the extremely immune compromised winter months. On one hand, its convenient for our human body study, as its been driving home lots of specific immune system questions. When J, my four year old was throwing up with the stomach bug, he repeatedly asked me, “What exact virus is in me? When will my white blood cells kill the virus?” It was kind of heart breaking and amazing at the same time.
|Some of our Anatomy study books|
Because of the aforementioned bout of stomach flu (which ripped through the whole family), we had to put off celebrating my oldest’s birthday with her buddies, and then I had bronchitis for another week. More fodder for immunity study (or lack thereof!). Finally we had the party – an enchanted forest party at my daughter’s favorite fairy grove. Everyone got Poison Oak. They do know what it looks like, but after years of drought, the sticks of it look kind of weird and were covered in new grass – well, long story short, the girls were pretty pathetic. But I have a new tool in my arsenal, thanks a tip from my dentist’s office manager, who saw my daughter when we came in and told us to go get this stuff post haste. Its stupid expensive ($40 at my local pharmacy, but about half that on Amazon – I’m definitely planning on keeping some on hand – it worked great and saved my day/week).
|My trail partner|
TRIGGER WARNING – dead stuff
|Vader’s looking on like, “I need to get those young ones on the dark side like PRONTO.”|
We’ve been taking a bit of a history jaunt the past week, veering away from the very interesting-looking chapter on “The Bottom of the World” in our history spine to give homage to the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. I was fortunate to find several good books at the library:
But really what the article and the radio show came down to me is that women in general feel a tremendous pressure to conform to a cultural ideal of two children. Women who have no children or only one child feel that their motives are openly scrutinized and naturally become defensive about why they want to live “childfree,” all for reasons that most parents can agree that yes, are easier without children (more time for oneself, more money, more time for career, etc). What I desperately wanted to point out reading this was that actually women on the other “wrong” side of the cultural idea also get tremendous loads of scrutiny put on them for their larger families. Any women whose family portraits veer much to either side of this two kid norm experience uncomfortable – and inexplicable – pressure to conform. While it might be appropriate from a sociological standpoint to ask why our nation’s birth rate is falling, and what steps might need to be taken as a nation to support childbearing in general, these are not the tone of questions being asked. Most voices in the media seem perfectly gleeful to stir up debate over what decision is superior for various reasons, but the question I want to ask is,
The real problem – and the root of the mommy wars – is that we as a culture have suddenly been presented with more options than ever before for what a woman’s life can look like and we just cannot accept that one woman’s ideal can be – will be – different that another’s. But we are not automatons, and one size, one life, does not fit all. And this is not only okay, its wonderful.