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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Sacrifice

For some reason I had been thinking about things and this thought popped into my head - probably because I just finished my novel and now that it's done my mind is seeking new stories - this thought, that I had thunk before but never quite in these words. And when I did I thought, "Ah, that's so true".

This thought was as follows:

Women sacrifice their self for love.
Men sacrifice love for their self.

Now before you gross generalization fiends start ringing off your bells, I know, I know, it's gross, it's generalized, it's a platitude which makes it not true for some people and maybe even many. We are 'liberated' after all (if you call being able to have a job and be paid less and then be able to go home and do the house work too liberated I suppose) and shouldn't be sacrificing anything for anybody.

But the fact is we do. Women, in general, sacrifice. We sort of... can't help it, I suppose. But that doesn't make it feel any better. And the reason I say I think we can't help it is because we sort of don't realize we've done it until it's already been done, till it's too late and to rectify would be so much worse.

And, dare I suppose that there might even be something... genetic about it? Now, settle down y'all. Men can be gentle and giving and very generous - they have the capacity if they choose to use it, this is true. But back them into a corner where you are asking them to do something that would force them to lose their sense of themselves and you have a fight. Again I am generalizing people.

But women will inevitably... do the right thing. Whatever consequences that right thing brings upon us. You can make all the "Sex and the City" movies and TV shows you want but women will always do what they see best for their kids (and they are looking mind you), try to make everyone else comfortable even if they themselves don't feel so, make sure everyone is fed and thanked and isn't offended... and then after the party is through try to figure out what is right for themselves.

Meanwhile, your hopes and dreams for your liberated self are slipping through the cracks in the floor boards just as you are sweeping. Your sacrificial self is bolstered and supported and help up by everyone around you as admirable and worthy. And then if you try to 'take' time away from the kids, from the housecleaning, from the spouse you either really do or are expected to feel guilty. Like they can't make a grilled cheese without you (well, in my case that actually may be true)

Harumf! Maaaaaaaaan, being liberated is hard.

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