Ok so now I am an officially published author. I get it. Now while I am waiting for the fame and fortune, something continues to plague my existence.
Now with all my newfound “specialness” I should have been able to immediately go out and hire a crew of maids to handle such mundane household tasks. I mean, honestly, does Sarah Palin REALLY pick up a Swiffer these days?
However, apparently until I hit that New York Times Bestseller List, I still find myself remanded to the drudgery of the same old housework I battled even as I brought the book to light. So much so that yesterday while I was vacuuming, I missed a call from a local newspaper reporter asking me about my book.
Fame apparently waits for no one, including those recently published authors still needing to do housework.
And my 11-year-old son also reminds me that regardless of the fact that now my book can be found listed on Amazon.com
I am still expected to pick up his dirty laundry, haul it to the basement, wash it, dry it, haul it back upstairs, fold it, and put it away for him. He’s not alone. Even non-author moms find that the old-fashioned views on “women’s work” carries on even a few generations past the burning-bra period of the 1970s.
According to Lisa Belkin of the New York Times Magazine, in her article Kids See Housework as Women’s Domain, there seems to be a direct correlation between the amount of time dear old dad is away at work and the time spent by kids doing chores. Not so with mom. Apparently regardless of mom’s other hats she wears, at home she’s still expected to bear the larger burden of housework.
This simply has to stop!
But before I get all huffy and naggy, I have found recent solace in a book I picked up the other day. In To Love, Honor, and Vacuum, author Sheila Wray Gregoire (a fellow Canadian!) discusses the challenges of women she says often, according to the subtitle, “feel more like a maid than a mother.”
With humor, dashed with a peppering of good old Christian values (even useful to me as a non-Christian) Gregoire empowers women to find their strength to recruit help from the other household members, do it gently, with love, and actually get results and reap the rewards of a happier, more peaceful home all around.
I’ve just started reading the book but I’ve already picked up some great tips. I especially enjoyed the section on asking appropriately; to get the kids or dad to help out more without resorting to what all women seem to be so good at…nagging (or so that’s what it’s called when they’re at the end of their ropes).
So armed with this great book, feather duster in hand, and sporting a new attitude, I plan to balance my burgeoning amazingness as an author with the knowledge that I am more than a scrubber of dirty toilets or sorter of socks.
I might even have the time to sit down and read a good book from time to time!