It’s not easy being an independent woman. Men are attracted to us; but they don’t know what the hell to do once they have us.
Last week as I was working on my “Getting To Know Me” post, a friend of mine pulled up. I was actually putting in a section in the post of “independent woman” after talking with her, I pulled it. YUP! Damn straight it deserves an entry all its own.
This friend and I have known one another since her and her son came to our old neighborhood. We honestly did not get to be best of friends until after Jack left. Sure she is a little more abrasive than I am. Her and I still laugh at a night we went out for my birthday and the place we were going…well ok I can say it now…their food was crap. However we didn’t realize until we got inside that once you are in you are not supposed to go out. This is also where she pointed out “you’re a rule follower.” We wanted to have a bite to eat…not damn pimento cheese sandwiches. We wanted…munch food…..not tofu what the hell ever. However, she went to the people at the front, and basically said we are going across the road to get a bite to eat and you are letting us back in. The lil college kids at the front did a “umm.ahhhh…hrrrrr. You can’t do that the sign says. We have food on the roof top.” Where was I? I wandered off. I am just not like that. Never have been and never will be. Five minutes later, she was talking to the manager and she told him the food on the rooftop sucked and they would probably get more business on fries, onions rings and ahhh drunk food than tofu and pimento sandwiches. I’m playing on my phone away from the whole situation. She comes up to me “come on let’s go.” Me “where are we going?” her “to get real food and then we will come back and watch the band.” So my friend is a lil more abrasive, a lil more outgoing, etc. We blend really well though. We do have a common bond; we are independent females. How we grew up, we had to do for ourselves. She actually had a harder life than I did growing up. One accident changed her life at 14. I hope she does not mind me talking about this, but I feel it’s important. That accident killed her father and left her mother in a wheel chair for the rest of her life. In an instant that 14 year old young girl; had to be a woman. A lot of people judge her for her abrasiveness, her demeanor. I guess that is why her and I get along so well, because even though we have different personalities for the most part, there is a reason why women become that independent female. We had a life where we had to grow up fast. The reasons we became independent females were different, but the reasons were the same. No one else was there to do it. Could you imagine at 14 talking to adults getting things set up for your parent who was walking one day and now in a wheel chair and would need nursing care the rest of her life? Don’t judge her or any female that is independent. There is a reason we are that way.
So anyway, she popped by, I was working on a small pool I had bought for the kids trying to get it situated just right. The box had a suggestion of having more than one person situating the pool. (Laughing) Yeah right in a perfect world. As she is talking I said “come on through the house I have a pool to put up you can talk to me while I am doing it.” We talked, I moved, situated and without hesitation she picked up a side of a pool and helped me. It wasn’t an intrusion for me. There was no innuendo of you can’t do this by yourself. She knew I could do it by myself. What would have taken me about 20-30 minutes to get where I needed it to, her and I had it done in 5 to 10.
Oh did I mention that she also spent the entire weekend helping the kids and I move because the house got foreclosed on? Two women and the kids moved all the contents out of the house in 2 days. Oh there was a guy was there, he sat on the tailgate a lot. Her and I were in the “let’s get this shit done mode.” We wore his ass out. I think all three of our kids (her son, my son and daughter) did more work than he did. We were like two tornadoes in that house.
Anyway, once we were done, we came out on the front porch and sat. I could tell she needed to talk and mostly vent. As she is talking, I am listening, nodding about and also finishing her sentences and she could tell I was active in the conversation she looked at me and said “I am glad you understand and are following me on this.” I laughed and said “it’s funny we are talking about this because a few minutes before you came by I was working on a post about this very thing. About the fact that men are attracted to independent females, but don’t know what to do with them once they have them” she laughed “no shit.”
She said it out loud and I was thinking it at the very same time. “Men don’t understand that even though we are independent, we still need that compassion, caring, appreciation and attention.”
Even in 2012, while men are attracted to that independent female, they aren’t used to having an independent female as a partner. They sometimes forget that we are still women and we need compassion, tenderness, touch, kiss, communication, attention and appreciation. We cry, we hurt, we have feelings just the same as any other woman. Don’t assume that when you get into a relationship with us that we are going to be that woman that is the housewife, that does all the cleaning, cooking etc for you. Also don’t assume that because you are a man you will be doing the yard work, house repairs and have a honey do list. The list is an “us “ list. We aren’t that woman that is going to watch you fix the roof; we’ll be up there with you. We aren’t that woman that you go do the yard work and we clean the house. No we can both do housework together and we can both do yard work together. We also know that this won’t happen all the time. There will be times our partner will ask us to do something and vice versa. That is part of a relationship. We also know we have to tone down (not let go) some of our independence for the relationship. Don’t think for a moment that if we ask you to do something, that we are not capable of doing it ourselves. It’s called we have got so much on our damn plate we are delegating. Just because we are independent does not mean we do not know how to ask for help.
Men how many times have you done a project and your wife, girlfriend made suggestions on how to do it? How many times did it piss you off because you know she’s never done anything like that before? Guess what when I offer suggestions I’m not talking out my ass, chances are I have done it before. Here’s an example. In the old house Jack and I shared we had an unfinished room in the basement (I say basement because it was a split level), this one wall was concrete…and pipes. Jack’s dad came up to help us. While they are standing there looking at the wall and all the pipes figuring out how to put the framing up, The wall was literally a jigjaw of pipes. What do they decide? Do jigsaw framing. I looked at both of them and I offered my opinion. Extend the wall out, we would lose a foot of space. If you do the jig saw framing you can’t put anything on that wall, not even the smallest nail because once that wall goes up, you aren’t going to remember where the pipes are at. And if someone pounds a nail and it hits one of those pipes you are literally going to have shit all over the place because one of the main pipes was the sewer line to the septic. I got the what the hell do you know look and “you’ve never done this before.” Ahh yeah actually I have. I’ve done framing, roofing (worse pitch than the house we bought)…NEXT!!! Whatever, drive the bus Jack, I’m an idiot.
I’m not a know it all. There are a lot of things I do not know how to do. Guess what, I will figure it out on my own. Or I will ask someone that knows. This woman is not afraid of getting dirty, breaking a nail, getting sweaty etc. I’ve made my own slide out shelves for my pantry. I’ve painted rooms, mowed, edged the grass, planted, moved furniture up and down stairs, rearranged furniture…would have been nice to have help and it sure as hell would have been a lot easier. Ask for help… I did.
I also cleaned the house, did dishes, did laundry. I’m not a clean freak. I am not the woman who is going to bitch and moan about shoes in the house when I just cleaned (Unless I just steam cleaned the carpets), I am not gonna freak out over a Kool-aid spill on the couch. There’s a reason my children knew how to drink out of a regular glass under two years old and why your six year old is still drinking out of a sippy cup. Not gonna kill myself cleaning and getting onto the kids over every little thing. When they were younger I would help them pick up their rooms and they would pick up toys. Jack and I had a difference of opinions on housecleaning. Apparently in his world of growing up, it had to be pristine, presentable at all times. As my therapist said he was ready for the Marine Corps before he stepped off the bus, when he was 18.
Now I will say this, my mother was not the housekeeper type. I was the one that did the housecleaning. God rest my mother’s soul, the house wasn’t dirty, it was just heavily cluttered. She “collected” everything. I can’t watch the Hoarders show because of how I grew up. My room was messy, hell even my friends rooms who had clean houses (that the kids did) were messy from time to time. There were a good many times I couldn’t see the floor of my friends rooms. I’ve seen their floors dirty, bathrooms in disarray, beds unmade. They were far from slobs and their house wasn’t messy. IT’S CALLED NORMAL LIVING PEOPLE. I felt more at home and welcome at my best friends house than I ever did at Jack’s parents house. When you aren’t sure if you are allowed to sit on the couch or if you should use the hand towel in the bathroom, and everything from ceiling to floor, to include furniture is white….it’s not welcoming. Taking the grand kids there?? HOLY SHIT!
Here’s my take on it and I know not everyone will agree with me. A house that is always clean and never in disarray gives me just as much of a red flag as a home that is a disaster (Hoarders people I’m talking Hoarders). Both of those extremes give me vibes (don’t knock my vibes). That overly clean, overly organized and everything in its place, house gives me vibes that it’s not always necessarily a happy home. I get the same feeling with the hoarder type of house.
I also get that there are women out there that enjoy doing that. (laughing) and regardless of what type of woman you are, when we know people are coming over, we scurry around making sure things are picked up. We are ALL guilty of doing that.
I’m not the woman who spends countless hours in the kitchen cooking, every night. I will cook, but don’t expect it just because I am a woman. If you ask “what’s for dinner?” you might just get a “whatever you are cooking” answer. My kids love my cooking, so I cook for them. I cook their favorites a lot of times. Sometimes it’s whatever I can find. They know the rules. Eat what was made for you or go make something yourself. When they were younger, I would try to get them to eat new things, if they didn’t like it, it was a battle of wits. I no longer do it. There were a lot of things I didn’t eat as a kid that I eat now. They will figure it out. I make the vegetables they like and the foods they like. I encourage trying new things. I have actually had more response from them in trying new things by not forcing it. My daughter is less picky than her brother and sometimes if it’s on my plate and it’s something she wants to try I will see her fork or spoon come over to my plate and grab one. “ooh mama that’s real good. Can you put a little bit on my plate?” Smile, “I sure will.” The kids aren’t going to be screwed up because of it. Even in the marriage there were a lot of things I enjoyed cooking, that Jack refused to eat. Growing up I used to doctor up the spaghetti sauce, green peppers, onions, etc. I used to make an awesome beef stir fry, using bok choy. Tried to make those things, Jack didn’t like them. Started to make what him and the kids liked. Still wasn’t good enough for him. Guess what, chicken nuggets and fries it is then. I have never been the big meal person. I don’t need potatoes, meat and veggies for supper all the time. Some nights I just want a salad. Some nights a PB&J suffices because I am not that hungry.
Tomboy? Yes I am and very proud of it. With being who I am, I have not had many female friends. The female friends I have in my life are very special to me. When Jack and I would go to parties, I wasn’t in the kitchen talking with the girls. I was with the guys. I was more comfortable with what the guys were talking about because I know what they are talking about. Don’t want to be in the house with the women, gossiping, bitching, moaning and oh yeah taking care of the kids while the boys are outside. Jack would never understand that, “go hang out with the girls” ahh no I have my female friends and these aren’t them. I don’t want to talk about the 400 plus dollar Coach pursue you got cause I could care a less. I don’t give a shit about designer clothes, purses or the new trendy fashions. Don’t care how long you spent at the salon getting your hair done and nails done. I am thinking sweet Lord these women are buying all this crap and Jack is bitching at me for buying useful stuff we need.
I’d rather be that woman that can be independent and can do this by herself. Than be in a relationship where I am still am doing it myself. That is more hurtful than going it alone.