I Deserve Better Than What Feminism Offers

I Deserve Better Than What Feminism Offers

Alright, ladies… before you get your panties in a bunch, hear me out on this one.  Women deserve equal rights, equal pay, and equal opportunity based on qualifications.  SOLELY on qualifications, not their gender.

Girls, here’s where you’re being sold short.  Do I deserve for a man to open a door for me?  Absolutely.  Do I deserve for my husband to be the provider and protector of me and our family?  Absolutely.  Does that make me weak or a lesser individual?  Nope.  If you feel that it does, maybe you need to do a little soul searching.  Men opening doors for women and being chivalrous displays that women deserve to be taken care of, not because we’re fragile or can’t stand up for ourselves, but because we should be valued.  If that makes you feel less, your value problem may be with yourself, not with those around you.  I’ll happily tell all of the courteous men in my life to let the door slam in your face since you can take care of it yourself.

Women (and men while I’m at it) are being reduced to a gender, which means they MUST be underpaid, undervalued, weak, and subservient, right?  Because I’m a woman, I must be held back in a male dominated field, right?  Because I’m a woman, I must feel the need to march with a pink sign while wearing genitalia on my head (what I would be marching for… I’m still not sure…), right?  Because I’m a woman, I should demand to be paid while I go off and have babies and not contribute anything to my place of employment, right?  Because I’m a woman, I deserve the right to kill another human being because they’re an inconvenience in my life, right?  Sorry, guys… I know the sarcasm is strong in this one.  I am just finding it so hard to sit by and watch “feminists” claim that they deserve rights.  What rights are you lacking?  Seriously… fill me in.  I’m still waiting to hear a legitimate answer to this question.  Currently, in America, what rights are you lacking?

Did my gender define my career path?  Nope.  I work in a male dominated career field because it’s what I love.  Should all women choose a male dominated career path to stick it to the man?  Nope. Women should do what they love or do what is right for their family and for themselves, not because they’re being shoved toward a male dominated career field solely to fill a “void”.  If staying home with their kids is what’s best for them and their family, they should have full support.  If working a full-time job is what is best for them and their family, they should have full support.

While we’re on the subject of employment, let’s discuss this pay gap.  While I’m sure there are many instances of females earning less than their male counterparts, here are a few contributing factors that are being vastly overlooked.  First, many women have children and some time goes by that they are out of the workforce.  Now, if a male counterpart has been continually employed while a female with the same credentials has been out of the employment field even a few years, this means the male counterpart will likely earn a higher wage.  This is absolutely fair.  The female has chosen to take time away from her profession in order to rear her children.  This is a life choice the female has made, so there are consequences.  If the female wants to maintain the same compensation as her male counterpart arrangements must be made, otherwise, she will not be compensated at a comparable rate.  This leads to the next workplace “inequality”… maternity leave.

Women.  Have.  Babies.   Simple fact of life… if men had babies there would be a lot more whining and a lot more pain killers 😉 . Totally kidding, men (*cough cough* not really…).  Now, women must leave their place employment for a period of time to deliver their baby and recover.  While the mother is away from work, her coworkers must pick up her slack.  Yes… her slack.  Is she there contributing to her company?  No.  Simple answer.  Should she be compensated?  Well, that depends on the company’s stance-as it should be.  There are some awesome employers out there that will pay for maternity leave or even offer an extended maternity leave.  That’s great for their employees, but for the majority of new moms, very few companies offer full compensation and very little time off after delivery.  My solution for this?  Make.  Plans.  Life is full of unexpected twists and turns-male or female.  No one owes you ANYTHING.  Not a thing.  Don’t like maternity leave policies at your place of employment?  Search for a new employer, don’t whine for a handout funded by hardworking individuals.  Don’t be a charity case.

I’m not naive enough to think that there aren’t women who are being paid less than their male counterparts, are discriminated against for having family responsibilities, or being told they can’t simply because they’re a woman.  The world is not perfect and there will always, ALWAYS be bias and there is nothing anyone can do to completely eliminate all bias in the world.  What we can do is stand up for what is right, what is fair, and for equality… for EVERYONE, regardless of race, gender, whatever.  Equality based on qualifications, not rallying for handouts or special treatment because of gender.  Break stereotypes.  Be a strong leader in your place of employment.  This means leading with dignity, with honor, and leading without any bias.  Don’t embrace victimhood, but shatter it.  Don’t elicit over-emotional responses and assume you’re being singled out based on your gender.  Stand and fight for what is right in a diplomatic matter.  Keep killin’ it ladies 🙂

Oh, and for those that completely disagree, that’s what creates healthy, thought-provoking conversation, so keep it classy when you discuss any of these deep topics with others, k? K. *stores soapbox until another day*

Sweaty Palms and How to Deal

Sweaty Palms and How to Deal

If you’re thinking TMI, you may want to move on to another post.  I’m writing this post because I figure if this can even help one person, it’s worth the time to put it out there.  When I say sweaty palms, I really mean completely drenched.  Like, dripping.  As a teen, I would play video games with friends, hand off a controller to the next player, then hear, “What did you spill on the controller?”.  Story. Of. My.  Life.  I would submit exams in blue books at school to my teacher or professor only to hear them say “What did you spill on your exam book?”.  When I would tell them it was my sweaty hands they would respond with, “Oh, you were that nervous?”.  Nope.  I wasn’t.  My hands have a mind of their own with no rhyme or reason to their sweatiness.

It wasn’t just my hands, my feet also had a puddling mind of their own.  I danced throughout school and we typically wore lyrical sandals (we fondly called them Jesus sandals…).  For those who have never been part of the dance world, this translates to a tiny piece of leather to cover the ball of your foot to allow you to turn effortlessly, but the rest of the “shoe” consisted of well, nothing-straps and that’s about it.  Now, imagine having consistently drenched feet and doing leaps across a hardwood gym floor in these suckers.  It ain’t pretty.  I fell on my butt more times than I can count.

I know, I know… get to the point, right?  Well, the point is I never found something that actually “worked”.  I did find things to help me manage the awkward effects of my sweaty hands and feet.  First of all, it has a name: hyperhydrosis (basically the scientific name for sweating too much).  A lot of people with hyperhydrosis seem to sweat more in the underarm area, but in this case, my hands and feet are the culprits.  I’ve had people all my life say “yeah, I get sweaty palms, too”.  No, just no.  Until your hands literally drip and you have to plan your outfit or shoe choice because you know you’ll either be standing in a puddle or will have sweat marks all over your clothing from your hands dripping, don’t tell me you can sympathize.  I have only met a few people that can actually sympathize.  My dad (thanks, dad… I know where I get it…), my sister-in-law, a foreign exchange student I met in high school, and I recently found out a friend’s sister has the same problem.

There is a surgery that can be done that severs sweat glands in the underarm area that will eliminate all sweating in the hands.  Well, I’ve dealt with this problem all my life, so thousands of dollars of surgery not covered by insurance isn’t a solution for me.  I have also been prescribed deodorants that “should” stop the sweating.  You guys.  Have you ever applied deodorant to the palms of your hand?  No?  Try it and see how that works out throughout the day for you.  Not practical whatsoever.  So, what has worked?  Not much, but I have found a few products that help some.  I have found a lotion as well as wipes that seem to work better than anything else I’ve tried.

DERMAdoctor MED e TATE Antiperspirant Wipes

wipes
Photo Credit: Sephora

These wipes are convenient and they work fairly well.  They sometimes gave my hands a somewhat waxy feeling, but other than that they didn’t leave a greasy or oily feel like some other products do.  They did slow the sweating, but when you wash your hands a few times the product loses its effects.  Overall, these were expensive (around $2 per wipe), but they were great for situations where I really, REALLY wanted my hands to be a little dryer than they normally are.  I came across these in a Sephora while in college.  I was taking yoga classes (yes… engineers can do yoga, too…) and would just get continually frustrated falling on my face while going into downward dog.  At the time these were $48 for a 24-pack, which is pricey, but I was willing to try anything.  A wipe in a convenient package?  Sold.  I was finally able to actually free my mind and not continually fixate on which pose would bring me crashing to the floor next.

Carpe Antiperspirant Lotion

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Photo Credit: Amazon

I haven’t used this lotion much, since I purchased it in dry winter months, but it has awesome reviews and is much more competitively priced at $24.95 for hand and foot lotion tubes.  The tubes are small, but it’s still a great start for a $25 price point.  The instructions say to use this product every night before bed and you will see results in around 4 weeks.  Ain’t got time for that?  That’s when the MED e TATE wipes might be handy.

Well, there you have it.  Is it a great list of solutions?  No, but I’ve tried everything to no avail.  I’ve tried prescriptions, lotions, deodorants on my hands, nothing has worked.  These two products at least give me some relief or improvement in a… sweaty… situation.  If this helps at least one person who suffers from acute sweat-itis (put that in the Big Book of Boo Boos, Doc McStuffins), then sharing this was worth it.

Mom’s Law

Mom’s Law

Ever heard of Murphy’s Law?  Well, Murphy has nothing on moms.  Mom’s Law is rather complex and actually applies to both moms and dads… Mom’s Law can get the best of any who is fortunate enough to be able to hang around tiny people for any extended period of time.  Refer to the following:

Mom’s Law

  1. If someone poops, everyone will poop. You will be cleaning up poop all day. Fact.
  2. When one thing finishes, everything finishes. The wash is finished so you need to move the wash to the dryer and put a new load in, but the baby is crying and needs to be fed and the oldest is yelling for you to wipe him in the bathroom while the chiweenie is standing at the back door wagging his tail frantically because he’s about to take a leak right there on the floor as the doorbell rings for the package that you have to sign for or they’ll take it with them and it will be lost in the abyss that is the United States Postal Service.
  3. Swamped at work? One of your kids will definitely be sick when work is busier than it has ever been. Sorry, work… my sick child can’t wait… you can 😉
  4. Huge outbreak of Hand, Foot, and Mouth, strep, and possibly the plague going around and someone on your child’s soccer team just “gets over it” and returns to soccer? The coach will make them “practice high fives”. No, I’m not kidding. You can’t make this stuff up…
  5. Run out of coffee? Don’t worry. Your normally cool, calm, and collected children will suddenly find the urge to bounce off the walls and pull out toys faster than your mom arms can carry the massive loads back to their places of origin.
  6. If you set your alarm for 6:15 am, the baby will decide 5:30 am is a great time for breakfast.
  7. When you get up to make said breakfast bottle, the baby will once again be sleeping by the time you get the bottle to his room.
  8. After you’ve confirmed the baby is actually asleep, put the bottle in the fridge, and hop in the shower, the baby will start crying for his bottle again after your hair is full of shampoo.
  9. If the baby takes a nap, you’ll always have just enough time to make your house or yourself presentable… never both.

There is one thing Mom’s Law has that Murphy should be jealous of: kids that melt your heart no matter what kind of wrench is thrown in your plans!

Llamas are the New Unicorns, Cacti are the New Floral

Llamas are the New Unicorns, Cacti are the New Floral

Man… times have changed.  I remember when unicorns were the “it” animal… or mythical creature… or whatever unicorns are.  They’re so fluffy I could DIE!  Anyway, it seems there is a new “it” animal to love: llamas.  I’m really not mad about it. In fact, the kid in me wants this backpack.   Like, really, really wants this backpack.  Who wouldn’t?  Those little llamas are just too cute.

llama backpack

And cacti?  When did this become a thing?  I mean, I know it’s been a thing for a while now, but when did we make the transition from floral and flower everything to cacti?  I have to say I definitely don’t hate it, though.  I remember online shopping for our oldest at Old Navy (because who has time to actually walk into the store???) last year in search of some cute shirts for church and coming across a coral button-up shirt with tiny little cacti and a denim skinny tie.

img_3698.jpg

Um, add to cart, please!  I thought it was SO different and unique.  Until I saw cacti EVERYTHING nearly a week later.  Oh well… at least I know I’m somewhere in the range of cool.  Maybe.  I also had to have this Kate Spade cactus necklace, because… cactus and Kate Spade, people (yes… Poshmark for $25… SCORE!).

cactus necklace

Uh, totes adorbs.  I know that’s no longer a thing, but I’m using it anyway…

An Ode to the Automobile: A Mom’s Permanent Residence and Sanctuary

An Ode to the Automobile: A Mom’s Permanent Residence and Sanctuary

As a kid my mom drove me EVERYWHERE.  And, sometimes nowhere… we liked music and if a good song was on (i.e. Sk8r Boi, Bye Bye Bye, anything by Nelly…), why on earth would we pull into the driveway to interrupt it???  Until now I never realized how many hours my mom probably spent chauffeuring us around as kids.

As my oldest has been in preschool a little over a year now I feel like all I do is haul tiny tushes somewhere.  He’s four.  Why do I feel like I’m running around like a crazy person when he’s only four?!  Now, don’t get me wrong, I am more than happy to take him to and from preschool, to grandma’s while I work, to soccer, to tee ball, to church activities, but dang.  Four.  Years.  Old.  What will this be like when he’s… I don’t know 14?

I dropped him off at preschool one day, pulled into our driveway and into our garage, and sat there for a moment in the silence (other than the sound of raspberries our youngest had been blowing continually the entire way home) and looked around my car.  I had a real life smell the roses moment.

I realized how much rushing I do every day.  I rush to get our youngest up and fed, rush to get them both dressed and ready, rush to get our oldest to school or to my parents’ house while I’m at work, rush to a sport, rush to church, or rush to wherever we happen to be going, but what do I do while we’re IN the car?  I remember having conversations with my parents in the car, listening to music, and sometimes just driving around just because.  I take the little things for granted most of the time like actually being able to afford a car to rush around in.  My car is dirty, dusty, has more Cheerios crushed on the floor and stored in the booster seat than I can count, has extra diapers, wipes, and formula stored in front of the carseat, a giant stroller taking up the whole cargo space, lawn chairs for soccer or tee ball taking up the remaining space of the cargo, a soccer ball, some snacks in the seat back, and more than likely a Starbucks straw wrapper or two somewhere in the front.

I looked around at the dust, clutter, and the sweet little baby in the back seat and thought to myself about how lucky I really am.  We have a car.  We have extra diapers, formula, and wipes to keep in the car.  We have a stroller and chairs to clutter up the cargo area.  Heck, we have a cargo area.  We live in a community where we can safely take our child to play soccer and tee ball and to an amazing, loving church.

In my messy, dusty car I realized how little I thank God for the simple things and look around and soak it all in.  Sometimes it’s great to appreciate the fact that we have things to be messy or days to be hectic.  So moms, enjoy your messy car sanctuary.  It’s proof that you drive your kids to and from activities they love, to and from families that love them, and to and from making memories together-even if it’s messy and chaotic.  Rock that messy car, momma.  It shows you love your family and spend time with them.  Time goes too fast-embrace it.

By the way… the day after I wrote this my husband cleaned out the ENTIRE car.  How’d he know?!  I must’ve been sending out dirty car vibes 😉

Want a Real Anti-Bullying Campaign? Stop Being a Bully on Social Media, Moms

Want a Real Anti-Bullying Campaign? Stop Being a Bully on Social Media, Moms

thumbs downYes, adults. This is directed at you, social justice warriors.  I’m climbing on my soapbox, so hold on, y’all.  I prefer to keep my blogging lighthearted, fun, sometimes informative (for those who care about clothes, food, and wiping tiny butts all day), and generally a pleasant read, but I’m so over it.

Social media posters hide behind their iPhones and their MacBooks (yes, I’m generalizing, Apple users… don’t be offended… I’m an iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Pro snob, so hang with me here) and scream “Stop bullying!  Protect our children!  Teach them to be kind, accepting, and tolerant!”, then five minutes later post their OPINION, yes OPINION, on what another mother should feed her child and pick a fight with someone who doesn’t agree, use the F-word, then condemn them for feeding them something they would NEVER feed their precious, perfect child.  Key word, sheeple, O-P-I-N-I-O-N.  Moms are the worst.  The absolute worst.  Honey, it’s none of your business what another mother feeds her child.  Is she giving them crack cocaine?  No? Ok, then keep your opinion to yourself because no one cares.

Opinions are great.  Discussions are great.  Let me rephrase that: CIVIL discussions are great.  That’s how we learn.  That’s how we grow.  That’s how we support one another, stimulate intelligent thought, and in general operate as an informed adult.  How in the world does using the F-word toward another mother help her to become a better mom or support her in any way shape or form?  Ooooh-me! Me!  I can answer that one!  IT DOESN’T. So. Don’t. Do. It.

Alright… *dismounts from soap box*.  Keep keepin’ on, awesome mommas.  I see you-you’re doing great.  Feed your child what you want to feed them because, guess what?  They’re YOUR child and YOU know what’s best for them.  Gluten free?  All the carbs? Organic?  Vegan?  Fruit roll up that fell on the floor?  Breast milk?  Formula?  Go on with your bad self, girl!  I salute you-you’re awesome.  Never forget that and never let that bully momma telling you what not to feed your child get in your way of doing your thing.

There is Hope, Second Time Moms

There is Hope, Second Time Moms

img_3443This is for you, soon-to-be momma of two, or three, or four, or… ok, not five.  I can’t help you there-you’re on your own with that many!  But seriously, this is to assure you if your first child was easy that your second probably won’t be a terror like everyone says.  The most frequent comment I received during my second pregnancy?  “oh… second children are always the difficult ones”.

I’m here to tell you, sleep deprived momma, that this couldn’t have been further from the truth for us.  I actually now understand what an “easy baby” is.  We were young and didn’t know any better the first time.  Our first child ate every hour on the hour, if not sooner, until he was 6 months old and normally wouldn’t sleep unless held.  I’m sure personality, diet, and a myriad of outside factors probably contribute to a baby’s temperament (see my previous post here for my theory…), but don’t let those comments scare you. Our second child is the happiest, healthiest, chubbiest, most chill tiny human I’ve seen yet!

Moral of the story?  Every child is different for so many reasons.  Had an easy first child and are terrified that your second will pop out like Stripe from the movie Gremlins (oh come on guys… you know, Gremlins the movie?  I can’t be that old…)?  Relax… chances are they will be a calm, happy baby.  From what I’ve seen with our kids and everyone else around us the second child tends to be content in any situation.  It may be that they’re so used to waiting for food, to be held, or just hanging out while mom cooks dinner, takes care of the older kids, or cleans that they just roll with it.  Props to you, second children!  May you be easy on your second time mommas!