Thursday, May 23, 2013
I am woman. Hear me…sweep?
It starts slowly, really. First it’s coming home, absent for eleven hours, and exhaustedly making dinner, Saturday cleaning days, and Sunday worship meetings. Before you know it there’re tiny feet mirroring your own, clinging to you as you stir the spaghetti sauce, fold the towels, change a light bulb, start the dishes.
It’s juggling schedules and middle-of-the-night feedings, handing over what’s most precious to you because duty calls you elsewhere. It’s coming home, feet aching, back throbbing, attention waning, to another shift.
But this shift is what matters. It’s what it’s all about. The wiping noses, and pulling casseroles out of ovens, another round of Princess Candyland, and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star serenades in the dark. “Another song, Mama. Just one more,” is the request.
And how can you refuse? You don’t. Though you may drift asleep, leaning against a toddler bed, once a crib, mid-tune. But you don’t refuse. You sing another and maybe another and then sneak out into the dim, quiet house.
But your shift is not over. No. It’s just begun.
There are calls to be made and emails to send, mail to be read and conversations to have.
And when you think it’s all done, when you finally slow, there’s the sweeping.
There will always be the sweeping, I’ve decided. Whether you do it or not, it will always be there, day after day. And there’s no sense in anger, in bitterness, in resentment, for having to do it all.
The washing and cooking and mowing and paychecking and comforting and listening. There’s no reason to resent having to do it all. We are women. We are the lucky ones for being able to do it all.
And it is grand.
So when the house is dark and quiet and there are little snores from down the hall and big snores from your own bedroom and you find yourself in the kitchen with a broom in your hand.
Be grateful that you can. I am. I am woman. Hear me sweep.