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Parenting

Can women really have it all?

Let’s face it, many of us thought we would enjoy having children and taking care of them a lot more than we do. Let me clear this up early: my children mean the world to me. I love them deeply. When they wrap their arms around my neck and hug me, I’m flooded with thanks that I have this chance to be their mother but nothing prepared me for the job of washing endless dishes, clothes and bedsheets, cleaning and tidying up the house and the general chaos of having children. There’s only so many times you can do the same thing over and over without feeling like your brain is turning unintelligent.

For me (and most of us), the pleasurable part of parenting is usually lost in a river of house chores. I often feel overwhelmed. In the very early stages, my husband and I hardly stayed up together telling stories or discussing the news like we used to. Instead, we yelled instructions to each other about who is taking out the bin, who should wake up and sort the baby at night (since we are both going to work in the morning), who will do the grocery shopping or who will pick the kids up from creche. The list of instruction is endless and if I am lucky he will do some without complain otherwise, I was meant to do all.

I think the biggest lie of modern day equality is that we can have it all. We are fed with this illusion that women, have an inexhaustible supply of physical and emotional energy that allow us to juggle a career and maintain a family all at the same time. Unfortunately, this just places unnecessary burden on us since firstly men can’t do what women can do – have babies – this throws equality out of the balance and puts a double burden on women. It wasn’t enough that women were already exhausted from the never-ending tasks of child-rearing and homemaking; we were told that women needed to pull their weight and contribute to the family financially to have a say as if only finance can make you have a say. hmm.

Yes, we can have it all, but I believe we can never have it all at the same time. To those who finally admit to themselves that parenting and having a career is hard, that is a good first step. Delay is not denial. Take life one at a time. No need to rush to the finish line or pretend to be super woman. Now that I have that cleared up, let me focus on the first stage which is raising my children without feeling frustrated, then as they get older I can start building my career and running my multi-million naira business. At the end of the day ‪#‎na‬Godwin.

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