Hear Me Roar

This morning I was talking to a friend about a blogpost she recently wrote.  In it she refers to the fact that the mom is usually the “default parent”.  Even if you are a working mom, you end up (usually) being the one who makes all of the baby-related decisions, and most of the child-rearing duties fall on you. It’s just the way it (usually) is.

The conversation brought me back to when I made the decision to give up my corporate job, and take on the new title of Stay at Home Mom.  It was not a decision that I came to easily. I was racked with guilt every morning when I left my girls, and racked again with guilt when I left the office to rush home to them.

But I had to quit.  I had to stay home with my girls.  In my heart, I knew it was the right thing for me to do.  Looking back, I really believe it was one of the best decisions I ever made.

That’s not to say I didn’t have moments of doubt after the decision was made.  Moments when I drove the car around for an extra hour just because the girls were napping and I wanted some peace. Moments when I completely lost my mind and went all sorts of Psycho Mommy. Moments when I laid in bed at night wondering, what the hell did I even do today? Did I shower?  Wait, what day is it? 

It was during one of those moments, that I starting writing this poem.  It’s more like an angry spoken word piece.

Traditional Woman

Once I was an independent
well educated woman of power.
Now I’m a 40 year old housewife
masturbating in the shower.

I used to be productive
but I don’t work anymore.
I have been relegated-
wife and mother; maid and whore.

I spend an hour floating
around from room to room
looking at the dust,
thinking about the vacuum.

I used to run a company.
Now I sweep and mop the floor.
I have been relegated-
wife and mother; maid and whore.

I flew through the glass ceiling
to the top of the corporate chart.
Now I’m in the PTO,
because I have to do my part.

I used to have an office
with my nameplate on the door.
I have been relegated-
wife and mother; maid and whore

I make the kids breakfast,
walk them to school, kiss their cheeks,
go home and stare at projects
that I’ve been putting off for weeks.

I used to spend my money
on the expensive suits I wore
I have been relegated-
wife and mother; maid and whore

I speak to people in grocery lines
but don’t remember what they’ve said.
I am thinking about last night
when you had me bent over the bed.

I used to be a feminist.
Now I’m not even sure.
Have I let down my strong sisters?
Wife and mother; maid and whore?

I know this job is important,
and I am no Stepford wife.
But this is not at all the way
that I imagined my life.

I kiss you gently on the cheek
as you walk out the door.
“Don’t forget your sandwich!”
Wife and mother; maid and whore.

“The whole world can be yours”,
they said in 1978.
College, career and children,
Oh man, this is gonna be great!

But it’s more like Ozzie and Harriet
than Mary Tyler Moore.
“It’s you girl, and you should know it!”
Wife and mother; maid and whore.

They fed us a line of bullshit.
They said we could have it all.
But they didn’t teach us to juggle,
they just threw us another ball.

I believed her when she sang
“I am woman! Hear me roar!”
Screw you, Helen Reddy.
I’m wife and mother.
Maid and whore.


Earworm.  I am strong. I am invincible….



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