Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I am not a mom- I am a supermom genetically

It is 9.03 pm  and my kiddo just dozed off ( yep its a phenomenological, narrative :) ). I just loaded my washing machine so that I could switch it on tomorrow at 5 am. We have a power shortage here in our apartment after 7 am so I like to prep ahead. I made my pork stir fry for tonight and mango curry for tomorrow so I can dash to my daughter's pediatrician for her shots tomorrow. I made my upma for breakfast to avoid early morning panic attacks when kiddo demands her feed and my time. I have made a mental note of things I need to buy tomorrow before I start work on Thursday also the stuff I need to buy for my next order. Oops my baby just wailed its milk time. It's over she is fast asleep again and I am back to my desktop. I am a mother of a 10 month old and  wife of a man who works from 11 am to 11 pm. This is my life. Life of an IIT ian who defended her thesis a month ago. I am not a monster mom. Yes I blog at night, my hair has greyed, I have no time for exercise, I have not touched a book after 30th of Jan (that was when I defended my thesis). I am right now bargaining the rates for chapathi for wholesale for my office, talking to a colleague as I write this. But my kid just had her apple and oat cereal, she is well fed for tonight. At times I forget to eat, but I don't forget that evening snack for my hubby, he has his fruits in a box pre - packed the night before. My body aches right not but I remember I have to dust that shelf in the corner of my living room. 

Is it possible to be like me, I think so, because some things are genetic. My mom was just like me. She skipped her sleep after night shift to make us kids gulab jamuns when we woke up. She knew the difference between shrubs and leguminous plants despite not having a B.ed in botany and admonished our science teacher who taught us these terms wrongly. I am the daughter a woman who survived her deceased husband and carried her head high, got her kids educated and married. I am the daughter of a woman who creates a havoc at the electricity  office for misreading her bills, the daughter of a woman who goes for a hysterectomy surgery telling us kids to do our homework and she will be back.

 I am the wife of a man who calls me and tells me to ask those women to shut up and go do their job,and that he married me because I was different. A man who makes me not want to curse the men folk entirely, who tells me he will take care of our kid not because he thinks I will mint money, but because he knows I would never be happy being tied down, and that I deserve to do what I want from life.

Today I was told by few that my mom had no option so she worked and now that I have an option I should not work. What is my option here, I ask? the fact that my husband toils for 12 hours risking his sanity? For once I feel pity on the poor men. Why should men bear all the burden while many of them would like to take the back seat once in a while? I can vouch for this, that my hubby is very caring towards Sarah and milder than me.I know a lot of men who are technically the mothers in their household, who cook, take care of kids lot better than their wives. While I don't undermine women who stay back home, I think they should definitely not state their husband earning sufficiently as an excuse. I firmly believe even when a man asks his wife to stay at home he is exerting the manliness imposed on him by the society. Given a chance if the society sanctioned, many men would have loved to stay back. So why can't some women want to work?

Having grown up in a state like Kerala where we have shunned such stereotypes, I can say for sure, there are men who have no qualms regarding their wives being employed. But I see a lot of people criticizing Kerala for this attitude. I often here many telling me "You Keralites never take care of your children, you are money minded and leave your children to maids".  Let me assure you I grew up under a maid and I have no hang ups.

While I love the sociological explanation ok Kerala and their women, I would want to tell the upset parties that, because our women work we have a better sex ratio than the national average. We don't kill our daughters because we don't consider them a burden, we know they can do much more than the men and therefore our women are independent.

And in the end dear Sarah, mamma wants to work for herself because some day you would want to do that for yourself too, explore, discover and be alive. I know you understand it more than anyone, you were within me when we both wrote the thesis, you traveled with me when I submitted and defended this thesis and you are my true supporter in all my kitchen adventures. I let this post stay here for you to know some day what I went through.

So please let people decide their priorities and don't impose your battle field and insecurities onto someone who wants the best of both worlds.

I dedicate this post to all those friends who have told me over and over that I am a selfish monster mom, if not for you adulation I would not churn out this post in 10 minutes.