Sundays mean trips to the grocery store seeing women unused to spending so much time with their children trying to figure out how to shut them up, keep them in line, and survive long enough to get them back into day care, day camp, or wherever they spend their days while their mothers head back to their desks.
It means seeing parents enjoying their children and coffee simultaneously in starbucks, feeding their babies bottles with their names written in block letters across them. I don’t think it’s because Zachary Lowenstein’s mother might forget his name.
Here we’ve arrived, the women of the twenty first century. We don’t have to wash sheets by hand and hang them to dry, hoping for a sunny day. We don’t have to knead bread so our families can eat, or preserve vegetables and fruits so we can have something to eat this winter. We don’t have to darn socks or knit sweaters to keep our kids warm.
We are liberated.
Our poor kids though. So many seem to see their parents only for bath time, story time, and a quick kiss good night. And of course, for the weekend trip to the grocery store or Starbucks.
What happened to generations of women whose role was to bring up their families? Were they really so intellectually stifled as we imagine?
They might have been.
But personally I miss them. I miss the women I used to read about who made jam and rolled dough.
Which is why I was excited to see two frumpy looking women having a conversation today, each with several small children tugging at her skirts. I leaned over to eavesdrop, convinced I’d get an earful on the best stain remover or how to make chocolate chip something or other.
This is what I heard:
I just applied to three doctorate programs.
The rest was muffled as one of the babies started to cry.