Up until a few months ago, had you asked me if I was a feminist, I would have, without hesitation, replied that of course I was for women and men having equal rights. I’ve always identified myself as liberal.
And then it happened.
Honestly, it was an internet rabbit hole. One thing lead to another and before I knew it, dots were connecting that had been floating in my mind for years. Things started to make sense. Dots were connecting and I was suddenly faced with a multitude of support, of reason and with a community of women that were like me.
You know, the “old fashioned” kind of women. The women who believe that women were better at home, focusing on taking care of their family. The kind of women that poured endless love and labor into each of their days. The kind of woman that appreciated a man and all the amazing support he brings and didn’t spend their energy, instead, bashing or disrespecting their husbands. Women who, frankly, are anti-feminists – not to say that they believe women aren’t human and shouldn’t be treated as such, but women who respect and appreciate the men and women are different. That maybe there’s a reason why women have traditionally stayed home and why men have traditionally gone to work to provide for their families.
The last few weeks, I’ve been silently noticing the burden of providing for our family that my husband bears. Even without recognition, he quietly gets up in the middle of night to catch up on work projects, wakes up early to get a head start on the day or comes to bed at 2 or 3am after working for 14-16 hours. He quietly plows through his day, busy doing what he needs to do for us. Without being asked. Without complaint. Day after day, I see him sitting at his computer, working.
It’s not hunting wooly mammoths, but the labor’s the same. I know he wakes up every morning and thinks about all of us. Every mouth here that loves to eat food. Every body here that needs to be clothed. Every person that calls the building under this roof home. We have all of this because of him.
And true, I’m not providing a paycheck for our family. Monetarily, my contribute is little/none but in exchange, I’ve tried to spend my days finely appreciating what an amazing man I have married. I am not competing with him in the workplace. I’m not faced with the guilt of putting our four children into daycare. I’m not wondering why our maid didn’t dust the lamps. Instead, you’ll find me at home. In the kitchen, kneading bread, roasting a brisket for dinner, tapping a pound cake out of its pan or ironing my husband’s favorite shirt just because I can. Because I want to. Because I want to respect and appreciate the amazingly strong and incredibly selfless man I can call my husband. Because I see what he does for us, every day.
Because words can’t ever express the gratitude I feel for having him in our lives.
So, thank you, for him. For every man who stands up for being a man. Who provides for their families, who faces the burden of going into work while their family is at home and does so without complaint. We appreciate you. And speaking for my husband, at least, I know I’ll be waiting for you at the front door with a kiss and a warm meal when you get home.