masculine

Women and The Church

The article “Catholics Stop Being So Weird about Women”  is rather popular on my facebook feed these days. I found it wanting:

Always, when you get specific about women’s roles, there will be a good woman somewhere who is serving God with all her heart, soul, mind, and strength, and she will think, “But I’m not like that.”

I sympathize with anyone who tries to write about the role of women. It’s so tempting to just say, “Let’s keep it simple. Wives, obey your husbands. The end.”

I tried that myself, as newlywed – tried obeying the hell out of my poor husband. Later, I realized that what the poor guy really wanted was to live his life with the weird, cranky, specific woman he fell in love with.

He didn’t want The Catholic Wife; he wanted me.

We can talk about women’s roles and men’s roles. We can pin them down to an extent because our natures are different. But we also must acknowledge that  there are always exceptions to the rule.I do not have that classically feminine personality but I acknowledge there is one. Does it make me feel less feminine? Sometimes, but I still have my role as wife and mother despite my personality quirks. The principle “obey your husband” still applies to me. My husband might be considered moodier than the masculine ideal but the principle, “protect and provide for your family” still applies to him.

And yes, I’m also pretty sure my husband wanted me, his quirky Catholic wife not some abstraction of the feminine. I may not be the quintessential woman, my husband may not be the masculine archetype but at least we accept that there are masculine and feminine ideals and they are there to guide us not ostracize us.

Men and Women

To an extent men like to see women struggle physically. They just don’t struggle in the same way and somehow find our efforts endearing.  This is not to say that men don’t help women in their struggles, but I do think they like to sit back and watch a bit before lending a helping hand.

A while back, I went to the feed store to pick up some feed.  As I began to lift the heavy bags into the truck, (which I can do with effort) a man nearby saw my exertion and came to help, but not without a slight hesitation and big smile. I accepted and watched how easily he threw the bags in the back. ah, men.

Outdone

My rakes’ tongs bend and flip.

The leaves fly up and cast down.

I work till my hands burn

With a pause the rake is taken –

And in three rough strokes

you have done what I could only do in nine.

Dear God, you, you were meant for this!

And I, your rib, outdone

admire it, your work, your curse!

Oh, to toil like a man,

Even this exertion makes my hips sway.

I only know desires and labor:

Receiving, bearing, moaning.

I give in.

 

 

 

 

 

Age Gap

My husband’s grandfather advised him to, “Marry a women at least seven years your junior; it’s easier to establish yourself as head.” Well, my husband didn’t follow through on that advice, he is only about four years my senior. But my husband said it was a good piece of advise, a vivid memory.

I can attest the age gap is a comfort to me. It is comforting to know he is older, more experienced, mature. And although the gap seems smaller as we age, it was significant during our first few years together. I married three weeks after my college graduation, he had been a college grad for several years by then. Just that difference gave me sense of security and it gave him a sense of confidence in his role.

Today, my vanity finds comfort in the fact that he is in his thirties and I have not reached that landmark – yet. And if he were seven years my senior, I would probably be just that much more  vain.

Sleeping Alone

My husband is traveling this week for work.  I read somewhere that women sleep better with a man in the house. I believe it. I never sleep well when he’s gone.

I Also found this : According to Tradition Which Side of the Bed should Men Sleep on? A lot of men said they preferred the side closest to the door,  But there didn’t seem to be a general consensus on the matter.