My husband and I recently had one of those rather uncomfortable marriage conversations. You know, the kind where confusion around gender roles and responsibilities began to muddy the waters and the signs of resentment seem to intensify. We don’t exactly subscribe to traditional family roles. In fact, Steve is a better cook than I and much more patient with the children. I have a day job and handle some finances (the quality of this is still to be determined). Our philosophy on gender roles is more like “whoever’s-closest-to-the-broom-sweeps.” At least that has been my interpretation. I won’t get into the mechanics of the Saturday’s verbal exchange here, but will note that my husband is an integral part in my ability to accomplish anything. I hope never to suggest an iota less than this truth when sharing about our family.
That being said, may I suggest that other young families begin to approach their family management strategy like corporations are attacking investments and acquisitions: via shared risk.
Let’s take the pharmaceutical industry for example. In today’s marketplace, it’s not unusual to find large companies sharing the cost of research and development, promotional budget, and liability. In a ever-changing, and volatile environment, it makes sense to have a variety of players equally vested. In the event that tragedy strikes, or an unforseen situation occurs, nobody is left fully exposed and vulnerable.
We both work. We both cook. We both clean. We both love the children. We are both present. We are both all in.
If you’re wondering, Steve and I reconciled, spending some time appreciating each other a little more. A worthy investment, for sure. Speaking of investments and, dare I say, wise stewardship, I found myself with one hour today that wasn’t hyper-scheduled. Weighing the options of how to spend the time, I quickly settled on a visit to a local consignment outfit. The return was monumental, as I made a remarkable discovery:
“We may not be clear on who wears the pants, but we KNOW who wears the shoes!”
These Marc Jacobs mini-wedges were beckoning. With flower detail reminiscent of vintage Bakelite and a price point I could not resist, they are now planted in my closet!
Did I mention that Steve and I watched a Gloria Steinem documentary together last night? The irony.