Saturday, October 15, 2011

Musings of an Undomestic Goddess

Lately, I've been trying to be more domestic. I figure I'm working part time these days. It should not be so hard to keep our house straight and cook a few meals. Every time I visit someone else's house I look longingly at the matching furniture, the paint on the walls, the manicured garden and think, "Someday...." Then I come home and think HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THAT IS DOMESTIC, how did our house get like this? I know that part of the problem is I am not domestic. I am not a cooker, or an organizer, or a decorator. Those are things I would like to pay someone else to do, except, I can't afford it.

A domestic goddess' mummies

Sometimes I do have domestic inclinations, though it usually ends up looking more like Beetle Juice did it than than Donna Reed. This week was little beast's 5th birthday so I attempted to make mummy cupcakes to take to her class. The cupcakes were from this great cookbook my man bought for her called A Zombie Ate My Cupcake. The cupcakes look simple right?

However, they are not and mine ended up looking like some crazy crack head toddler got a hold of the icing bag, but no, it was just me.  I'm just not cut out for this domestic goddess thing. 
A Queenpin's mummies

The whole experience got me thinking about domestic goddessism and it made me look around my house. This is what I saw:

My enemy - the needy whore laundry

My desk - AKA the I'll file that shit later pile

Big Beast's room - all three of our rooms look about like this. 

An then I went outside and this is what my poor neighbors have to deal with:
The "hedge"
The "garden"
The front porch
Our house is a wreck. 

I have this vision of what I should be. You know, that sexy mama, with cleaning pixie dust shooting out of her uterus. I'm a woman right? Domesticity should come naturally.

I have perfect excuses for being a little bit of a mess: single working mother, in grad school, young kids, yet I also know women do it all the time. I've seen it. Yes, I have seen clean, organized houses. Just not mine.

I have a rent - a - husband on the books. He does odd jobs for me, and when I can afford it he cleans my house. Yes, I love that a man cleans my house more than me. It cracks me up. But his cleanings are few and far between, so really, on a day to day scale our house looks like a tornado has blown through the inside. 

My therapist and I talked about it today. Cleaning, organizing, cooking. They are not priorities for me. My mom, the OSQ, and I laugh saying I missed all those important life lessons like cooking because I was always out on the side porch smoking and reading my book, and that is basically true. I was just not interested. My sister cooks, my brother is a homegrown chef, me....I'm an open the box kind of gal. I'm a curl up and write, read, collage, study, kind of woman, not a fix it, clean it, cook it, domestic goddess. All my cleaning pixie dust fell out of my uterus at birth. 

This year in my life has been all about figuring out who I really am and owning it. It's about taking the visions of who I think I want to be and refashioning them into what is real and what is me. I think I'm just going to have to accept this about me: My domestic goddess gene is missing. My writing ate my Molly Maid, my collaging ate my Martha Stewart, my love of novels ate my Rachel Ray. I am fat with those crazy bitches, at some point they may just work themselves back up, and I will be awash in the vomit of domestic goddessesism. However, today, I'm just gonna finish my book.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Good Vibrations - Aunties Please Skip this Post

Can I really write about this without being totally pornographic? Probably. Because sex is funny, especially when it involves yourself. My girls and I sat on the porch last Monday night telling funny stories, and by funny stories I mean stories that involves things that vibrate that cannot be purchased at Wal-mart.

I used to know this wise woman in her late seventies. She would always council women to learn to take care of themselves, and by take care of themselves I mean go to the nearest sex shop and buy a vibrating friend. She wanted women to learn empower themselves in their bodies and to understand themselves sexually. She wanted them to take a little time to be single and to understand that alone can be okay. Alone can be satisfying.

I was probably 19 when she gave me that advice, now I'm 37. I've had many friendships with beautiful and amazing women, and I know that not all women desire a little extra umph when they are with themselves, but I have also found that women who know their bodies, who find their sexual power (with mechanics or without) are a force. They have a comfort with their bodies, a confidence, and there are no apologies for being a sexual being. It is pretty delicious.

Mae West, one of my favorite wise women said, "Sex is emotion in motion."
As I write this, I realize it may sound like I don't see the point of a partner, but I do. I love team sports as much as the next girl, and I but I also know that when conditioning yourself for any sport you need to have confidence in yourself and know your limits. Self-exploration is essential in soccer as well as sex. It involves serious concentration and a good sense of humor.

You'd be surprised how many women have great stories about their experiences with self-exploration being exposed. Sitting around with friends laughing, the quietest sweetest lady in the room will often surprise you with a great story about a mechanical snafu.

Years ago I had a friend that worked in a substance abuse treatment center for women. My friend was very shy about her body, about sex. She was very naive. She would blush when we would start telling stories or making jokes. One day at work the staff had to do a room search of all the client's rooms in the treatment center. Gloves were worn, drawers searched, mattresses lifted, and closets rummaged through. My friend hated this part of the job.

Close, but not quite.
She and her co-workers had gone through a few rooms. Ugh, dirty laundry, other people's stuff, privacy disregarded. My friend just couldn't wait to get it done. She was going through a drawer of clothes when she felt something firm and hard. Hmmm. What is that? She pulled it out. Purple, long, firm. "What is this?" She turned it over in her hand, "A flashlight?" The other staff member's eyes in the room became huge and she busted out laughing. No, baby, that's a sign you need to get out more. That my friend is a vibrator.

Second hand I heard the story of a woman who heard her two year old playing in the other room. He was quiet, and fascinated with something. The mama took advantage of those precious moments to get a few things done. Eventually, she realized she should peek in on him and make sure everything was okay. There he sat in all his cuteness fascinated by this vibrating, wondrous thing he had found in his mom's drawer. Enamored with its sleek design, it's squishy exterior. Look what I found mommy! He held it up with pride. After that the woman had to throw it out. Every time she saw her mechanical friend she had visions of her two year old smiling up at her as if he had found gold.

 Another friend told me a great one just the other day. Her wusband's dad came to pick up her daughter for an outing. The man had driven a few hours. He's a man that is buttoned up tight. He's a man that makes sure his creases are perfect. He's a man that never farts. He had driven a few hours to come get his granddaughter and he asked to use the bathroom. My friend had straightened the downstairs of her house in anticipation of his arrival, but hadn't worried about the upstairs where the bathroom was. Oh, well she thought, he'll just have to see the mess. She sent him up to the bathroom and continued to get her daughter ready for the trip. When wusband's dad returned downstairs he did not meet my friend's gaze, he was bustling around nervously trying to get his granddaughter out. My friend thought it was just the awkwardness of wusband's dad picking up daughter, a new thing.

After her daughter left for the weekend my friend went upstairs to get ready for her Friday night. As she reached the top of the stairs on the way to the bathroom she was distracted by a glint of silver coming from her bedroom. The light of her bedroom perfectly reflected off something silver laying on the black sheets of her rumpled bed. Her eyes zeroed in and she started laughing hysterically as she realized that her ex-father-in-law wouldn't meet her gaze because he realized that she had taken a mechanical lover. She is a woman who can take care of herself, wusband or not.

Approved for putting in the ear.
My absolute favorite story happened at a dinner party. Another single mama with two small girls. She had pulled together a fabulous dinner, there was wine and great conversation. The girls had been shuffled off to the mama's room to watch a movie. It was adult time, until the sweet youngest girl, toddled out to the table and said, "Mommy, sister keeps sticking this in my ear, and I don't like it." There she stood in her Dora p.j.s with ruffled hair holding up a vibrating wondrous thing. Ahhh, those kids say the darnedest things, and expose the damnedest things.

Stephan Jenkins, the lead singer of Third Eye Blind, said, "Sex is funny and love is serious." Where does that leave self-love and exploration? Somewhere in the middle, seriously funny, scarily scandalous, nicely necessary. If you haven't done it already, (you know who you are), go on girl and arrange a meeting with your vagina. I'm sure she'll be happy to make your acquaintance. Just make sure that when that mechanical snafu happens you share the hilarity and email me the story.