blogger contest, contest entry, feminism, Mothering, relationship, society

A thought about my identity- A woman or A mother?

I have always known being a wife and a mother were in my cards. I thought I would have a neatly combed hair( if not salon styled), a well-maintained house, me-time perks and above all my usual good night’s sleep! I never thought or even realized that having a husband and two kids would mean I’d have six dirty footprints traced through that well-maintained house multiple times a day. Well, that was one factor among the numerous other things that the ‘WomeninMe’ failed to compromise but the ‘MominMe’ lived with it happily!
Being a mom is one dimension of me. I’m a mother indeed, but I am not ‘only’ a mother. I, as a woman have my own multidimensional identities/capacities/vocations as every other human being. The woman in me is getting sick of the guilt trip that she takes between being a mother and my other passions. Not to deny the fact that social pressure does have a say on both the identities within me.
In the passage of womanhood, after kids got into my life, the focus quickly shifted and routines once that were rituals got buried deep into the toy basket. It isn’t surprising that children and family come first to the mom in me , for that matter to any other mom out there.
  • As a woman feeling and looking beautiful was never a miss but as a mother appearance has become more of a wish than reality. While the ‘WomaninMe’ needs a relaxed bath/shower time with the bathroom singer’s performance. The ‘MominMe’ would compromise for a quick 5 min shower ( 5 min?! you may wonder- in fact it is a luxury when I don’t hear ‘MOM’s and banging at the door!)
  • Many a times, the ‘MominMe’ has even forgotten to brush her teeth till breakfast as queue of things would wait for her to opens her eyes! [ The woman in me would curse me this action. For to her brushing is the first and foremost personal sanitation at the start of each day]
  • Coming to times of outing and other social get-together, the ‘MominMe’ spends most of her time talking about her kids to others even if they weren’t around. [‘WomaninMe’ -it’s wonderful to brag, necessary to elaborate, crucial to have an outlet but come on you are so much more than your kids!]
  • The moment people ask about me, the ‘MominMe’ would spring out spontaneously to utter ‘I’m a mother of two’. I overwhelmingly compromise my identity. After all, children are the center of my day-to-day routine and I think thrice before I take any decision in my life. [‘WomeninMe’- hey wait!- tell them who you really are! What you do/accomplish. Flaunt about your creative side lady!]
  • Now comes the brutal fact of TIME. Prior to mommy hood, I had no real concept of time. Though I had work and other responsibilities, the ‘WomeninMe’ chose those. I could walk away or skip some if I wanted to. But the ‘MominMe’  is controlled by the routines of my children and their demands. For now, time no longer came free, every moment is bought, borrowed or stolen by my children. Yes!, the ‘MominMe’ can even trade her TIME for her kids!.
Emphatically, it’s a strange and complicated issue satisfying both the woman and the mother in me. May be it’s my inability to identify me as anything other than a mother. My independence and the identity I developed for two and a half decades, my talents, my capabilities and my qualities does still remain within the woman in me ready to boss over the mother. But just because I compromise ‘Me as a mom’, it doesn’t make me any less. Because it is this privilege and love I get from being a mom , is often what gets me through the odds of life!
Of course, I love motherhood and am always ready to do anything for them. But there is more to my identity than my very own two little human beings- more that was before they came into this world and more that will extend beyond their childhood when they are no longer dependent on me as they are now!
The mom in me will still exist no matter what their age be, but the woman in me needs lot more  to fulfill and sustain herself. I would never compromise to bring out my hidden talents to be ‘me’ and ‘what I used to be’ in the walks of life!
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feminism, society

#Let’s make it happen

Published on Women’s Web on March 8th http://www.womensweb.in/2015/03/do-we-need-an-international-womens-day/

On Sunday, the 8th March, a number of my friends will post something on their social media networks to celebrate Womanhood or speak out against gender inequality. Yes! International Women’s Day makes it easy for young generation to put on their part-time activist t-shirts, ordinary people to get excited about Women’s rights, Media to make money with special programs, debates and brands to sell more! As the day approach, everywhere you see articles on women empowerment, feminism, women’s rights and so on… All these are like one-day matches, very interesting, sensational and talk of the town. The next day it kind of vanishes in air. We need to screw ourselves and think seriously on this.

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It is bliss to be a woman. She is looked as an epitome of love, compassion, embraces all hardships just to keep her family and loved ones happy! But the irony is she is being denied of equal rights and opportunities as men. She has to really struggle hard to fight for her dignity she deserves. The respect that should come naturally is not even received even on demand!

When this is the situation prevailing even now, let me put forth an important question.

Why do we need an International Women’s Day? We, women comprise over half of population in the world, so why do we get our own day! Why is this special celebration, just for women?

arton6310-e71a5 In spite of being over half of the population, women are half of nothing!

Yes! Are we half of policy makers? No!

Are we half of corporate executives? Nope!

Or at least half of decision makers? Not even close!

But there is a lot of other ‘yes’s

Women do consist of half of world’s population in extreme poverty! We are well over half of the victims of domestic abuse, violence, and physical assault and rape.

(http://www.unwomen.org/en/what-we-do/ending-violence-against-women/facts-and-figures)

(http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs239/en/)

These statistics are not worth celebrating. Let me make it clear, this is not about making men half of those horrible statistics; it’s about making world a better, safer place for all. I think “women issues should be looked as Human rights issues!”

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Though women are increasingly holders of financial and economic clout and their consumer purchasing, investment and financial power are gradually rising, we need to work out on it more.

So, coming back to the question again, do we really need to celebrate International Women’s Day?

Well, we NEED it

  • Because when this was first celebrated over 100 years ago, it brought few rights for women in every country throughout the world, including the right to vote.
  • Because women all over the world are still far from achieving the true gender equality
  • Because this year UN’s IWD theme is “Make it Happen” And above all

Because we are Women! Who have stood up against all odds, and will continue to until the idea of celebrating a day for women becomes obsolete!

Now isn’t this something to be celebrated!  But let’s not forget to celebrate being a woman every day, every minute and every second.