It's not often I get blogger's block, and it's funny it strikes me as I try to write a post about a topic I have many opinions about. Perhaps it's because I'm being challenged to just be positive about womanhood and women instead of just letting of a torrent of rants about all the negative things women do to each other.
Sometimes I feel like I was a truly naive child growing up and not because my parents did anything wrong, but I have quite vividly in my mind just not noticing that I was "the daughter". I knew that I was a girl, and that sometimes I was made to wear dresses and my hair was often allowed to be longer than my brothers, but I didn't really feel like a separate creature from my brothers or other boys that I went to school with.
I read an article today that just made me sad, and instead of getting into it too much, I'll just share it here. What I have to say about it is that I'm sure both my parents were happy to have children of both genders, but I feel like they would have been happy too just to have three boys as well. What I am grateful to both my parents is that even though I am their only daughter, and the only grand daughter, that they put very few gender expectations on me. Sure I had dolls and did a lot of crafts, but I was encouraged to learn everything my brothers did, to be involved in sport as my brothers, and to be as tech savvy as possible.
It wasn't until I was in college that my mom started to put more emphasis on the fact that I was "a daughter" and that's different from her sons and that my dad "wrapped around my finger" as my mom would say. I find myself playing the part of "the dutiful daughter" now and again over the last couple years, but they've been largely positive experiences (though I complained like a cat with a broken foot at the time).
Tomboy, butch, not romantic, not girly, boyish, nerdy, geeky were words that people sort of used to describe throughout school, but I never liked them much. I've always had a problem describing myself, putting labels on myself as it were, because none of them fit as neatly as when other people use one word descriptions for themselves. Around the I met my husband the words people started to describe me differently "fit" or "pretty" started circulating a lot. Granted I started to dress more feminine and pretty, but it was like my husband just brought it out of me and I liked it.
Both my husband and I have had to re-evaluate how we view each other as man and woman, and how we view other women. My husband has very traditional ideas about women and I'm quite forward thinking and sometimes that clashes, especially on topics such as future child rearing. But his traditional approach isn't suffocating, it's quite sweet actually, when he opens doors for me or makes me walk on the inside of the side walk. He makes the effort to be a gentleman and make me feel like a lady.
The latest of descriptive words to add to a restrictive repertoire is "army wife". I have to say that I've had very few positive experiences in dealing with other "army wives" as so, so, so many of them seem to affirm the army wife stereotypes. However, I am grateful that I have a husband that, in spite of insisting on being a gentleman, has the sense and the heart to let me the woman that I am: one that's in touch with her masculine and feminine side. And if I have to be the only one in this town with a nick name of "Pramsville" (Buggeyville for non EU members), I'm happy enough.
I could keep going about this at this point, but I'll cut it off here and stop boring everybody. Looking forward to reading everybody else's take on womanhood!