Friday, October 10

My Love/Hate Relationship with Being a Woman

The Woes and Wows of Womanhood

“Ugh! I hate being a woman!” I declared boldly as I flung yet another ill-fitting shirt into the heap of clothing piled at the end of my bed.

            My husband sat by watching as I continued fingering through the hangers in my closet. I was meeting two girlfriends at a local restaurant in less than half an hour and had nothing to wear.

            “You know,” I continued on my rant, “men have it so much easier. Your hair is short, you never have to shave your legs and, if you had them, your clothes from high school would still fit!”

            Scott, my husband, nodded in agreement and laughed out loud, “I don’t know if it’s easier to be a man,” he quickly retorted. “We have to support our wives and that’s a hard job.”

            I cracked a smile in response to his aptly truthful statement. He always found a way to make me laugh.

            In all honestly there are many days when I believe it would be easier to be male than female. When it would be easier to not shave my legs, or paint my nails, or (gasp!) color my persistently graying hairs. Definitely days when I think it would be easier to not face the hormonal fluctuations that can wreak havoc on our moods.

            Then there is the issue of the closet. Mine is currently a testament to my persistently changing body over the last seven years while I have been pregnant, nursing and chasing after three children. Clothing ranging in sizes from 2 to 10 hang haphazardly and always ignite frustration when a date with my husband or an outing with friends requires more than jeans, t-shirts or sweats. Not only does it seem like nothing fits, but who has time to actually get to the mall to buy something that does?

            Quite frankly, all of this female powdering and prepping can often seem like a nuisance. One, that as the mother of three children, I do not have time for.
            And yet.

            God made me a woman and sometimes I have to remember to be thankful for that.

            “Babe, you’re beautiful,” Scott added gently and compassionately. “You always look great.”

            When I am not angry with my clothing and graying roots I will concede to try to believe him for a moment and then thank God for the gift of my husband’s kind words. Words that remind me that God created us purposefully different and then intentionally brought us together.

            Words that remind me that there is a beauty inherent in being a woman that I must work to appreciate and that I should find ways to be thankful for, regardless of how mysterious it feels even to me.

            I guess, if I’m honest, there are some things I rather enjoy about being a woman. I do like painting my toenails bubble gum pink in the summer and now my girls ask me to paint theirs as well. I’m a sucker for a cute pair of earrings, especially when needed to add interest to my boring jeans and solid color tees. I do actually enjoy shaving my legs, when I have the time and, if I must confess, visits to the salon do offer a chance to sit quietly and read a magazine. What momma doesn’t enjoy that?

            While many of these things seem superficial, they are a part of being the feminine me—the me that is also softer emotionally, more intuitive about some things and that allows a perspective on life that is very different and yet complementary to that of my husbands—a very good thing for our children indeed.

            I’m learning to embrace all of me, just the way God created me. Not only for myself, but because a healthy perspective on my part is necessary as I try to shape healthy perspectives in the minds of the three little women God has entrusted to my care. Being a woman and raising women adds a lot of extra color to my life, literally and figuratively, but I’m realizing that color, after all, is a very good thing.

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