Sunday, October 20, 2013

Gender Norms

A subject I have always felt very passionate about is gender stereotypes.

I feel I was raised in a pretty typical "traditional" family dynamic. Dad worked, but so did mom. Mom cleaned, did laundry, cooked. Though as I got older and Dad was home more he started to cook. Mom knew how to fix little things around the house, Dad knew who to call to get something fixed. We went out to eat where Dad wanted to go, ate what Dad liked and watched whatever he wanted on TV. 

I was a hard core feminist in high school and challenged anyone who said I couldn't do something because I was a girl. Arguing with teachers and classmates was my specialty. I also made sure that during recess that I was allowed to play football or soccer with the boys even if I had to "tattle".

I knew that getting married to someone would sort of ruin my image of myself as some independent, traveling, feminist rocker, but Dan was able to make me settle down.

We have been together now for almost 11 years. He knew when he asked me to marry him (I had a huge problem with him asking me and asked him a few times, but it never took) that I wouldn't be into doing all the housework myself or watching just what he wanted on TV. Luckily we have been happily married for almost 7 years and have learned a lot about what we want in a marriage, let alone our relationship.

Dan does the laundry, cleans up in the kitchen and builds/fixes anything we need. I like to cook, clean the rest of the house and paint stuff. In the end our roles are not that ground breaking in the ending of gender stereotypes. 

Having a child though does make you reevaluate a lot of things. Specifically what we want our parent styles to look like to our child. 

Being a teacher automatically makes me more knowledgeable about children. Having a little sister and constantly babysitting other kids growing up helps me feel comfortable around children. Dan however still feels a little lost thinking about how to discipline or even communicate with a child. However he is great at dealing with teenagers and their sarcastic tendencies (surprise, surprise). I know he will have more patience than I will, especially if I become frustrated or angry. He is just better at keeping his cool.

I like the idea of our boy having a childhood that is full of love and examples of what a healthy person, a healthy relationship, and a healthy family looks like. That is what is most important to us. Making sure we raise a boy who respects women, knows how to cook and do his own laundry is just icing on the cake. 

I know we will make mistakes and have problems come up. Being able to step back and ask ourselves, are we raising a contributing member to society will help keep us focused on the final goal of raising a child.

So, this all started as I sit here and watch the Colts/Broncos game while Dan cooks us dinner. I have always liked sports more than Dan. I played on a bunch of teams growing up and had a Dad who was very sports oriented. We knew if it was football season that any and all games were going to be on the TV that day.  I sort of laughed at thinking about how different our relationship is compared to my parents and other couples. But I really love our family dynamic and it works for us. Plus, he is turning into a much better cook than me. Proof:

I am not eating enough protein and he heard quinoa had a ton, so he just found the 
best recipe on the internet for it! He even looked up plating techniques. This guy!

It was a busy weekend for me, though I left Dan at home since it was his first weekend off in FOR-EV-ER. I headed over to Indy on Friday night and then mom and I went to IKEA on Saturday to get the crib and other furniture for the nursery. We spent the day shopping for the baby and got a ton of stuff. It was a great time! I got home late Saturday night and then headed to church Sunday morning.

Dan and I got to tour the labor and delivery floor with our doula Sunday afternoon. Then we came home and worked some more on the nursery. We got the crib assembled, the bookcase, Dan got the video monitor working and we started unpacking things into the better areas. Very exciting stuff for us!

Dan had fun with the directions from IKEA for the bookshelf:

Dan says "Best instruction manual for a baby I've seen"

We ordered the crib mattress and it is on its way. Now we just need to get the changing table and closet doors painted, hang up some art, order some new lighting and paint a few more things. Then we are READY!

Realized I haven't done one of these in awhile! 32 weeks

How far along: 32 weeks. 2 months to go!

Total weight gain: Didn't get on a scale this week. Maybe next.
Maternity clothes: Got some cute sweaters with mom this weekend. We went to a maternity shop first, but I didn't see anything I liked. Then we went to just a regular consignment shop and I found a TON of sweaters that were perfect. Leggings and sweaters are going to be my uniform as we finish out this pregnancy.
Stretch marks: Nada
Sleep: Only getting up once a night right now with leg cramps/bathroom break. Turned on our heated mattress pad last night and it was glorious! Though I only need it to heat up the bed a little and then I am good. Still running pretty hot.
Best moment of this week: Getting so much stuff done in the nursery with my awesome hubby!
Miss anything: Wearing high heels. Heels at all really. So many pretty shoes I can't bring myself to buy right now (Dan is very thankful).

Movement: He kicked me a few times that actually hurt this week. Love it still though!
Food cravings: Still TGIFridays...haven't gotten there yet. I got to enjoy my favorite Greek restaurant in Indy on Friday night though. Soooo good.
Anything making you queasy or sick:  Felt pretty awful  on Thursday/Friday with heartburn/sour stomach. Not sure why. I actually told Dan it felt a lot like after I use to feel the day after chemo. It sucked, but luckily woke up Saturday morning and felt completely normal again.
Have you started to show yet: More complete strangers commenting on my belly. Even had a bag boy offer to help me with my groceries. Weird, but understandable I guess.
Gender: Boys, boys, boys, we like boys in cars Boys, boys, boys, buy us drinks in bars Boys, boys, boys with hairspray and denim And boys, boys, boys, we love them, we love them
Labor signs: Some more cramping, but we asked the midwives about about it. It is still perfectly normal. They are not worried unless there is a pattern of more than 4 an hour.
Belly button in or out: It seems to be getting bigger? Is that possible? Stretched out kinda?
Wedding rings on or off: Still on. Not as bad this week with my hands being more cold. Now I am waking up slightly swollen though and my poor feet still aren't so hot looking.
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy this week. Good week/weekend overall.
Looking forward to: Next weekend we get to go see Jim Gaffigan! Dan will also be home for the weekend, though he has a random gig on Wednesday this week. But Saturday we have nothing on our calendars! Something we haven't experienced since the 3rd weekend of August.

1 comment:

  1. Hello, beautiful! You look radiant in your belly shot. :-)

    I love this: "I like the idea of our boy having a childhood that is full of love and examples of what a healthy person, a healthy relationship, and a healthy family looks like. That is what is most important to us."

    You guys rule, and I know you will be a wonderful example of family dynamics for the wee one. Unless of course CATAN is involved. :-) Just kidding. I can't wait to play with you guys!

    Also, damn, Dan! Good job with the quinoa, and nice plating!