Friday, February 22, 2013

The Cracks

Williamsburg, 2013

Man, I love the blog world.

Occasionally, you get mired in looking around on Pinterest and at family or lifestyle blogs and it seems like everyone is making DIY confetti throwers or crafts in Kenya or filling their living room with balloons or eating plates of figs or being very pregnant in a bikini. And I am as guilty as the rest of them of presenting a curated, edited look at my life online. I am, after all, an editor. Plus I love it when the little every day moments of life are elevated, and treated as special, and when people don't moan about how hard it is to have a family all the time. Because I chose this and wanted it and do really feel the privilege in every moment.

But that doesn't mean I don't relish, I mean really relish the blog posts that are honest about what it takes to make a certain kind of life work. Like this one, today, from Girls Gone Child. It's just so on point. It also hit a nerve because I was just writing and thinking about how much time Axel spends with his nanny, and how weird it feels to say that, how I almost downplay it, even if I think (or know) it's the best possible arrangement for us right now.

Since the post is just so good, I'm printing an extract here:

"I was recently with a group of very well established work-from-home women who have nannies that help while they work. I had no idea that any of them had help because nobody ever said anything. Nobody felt comfortable saying anything.

Nobody talks about hiring help because nobody is supposed to. Because it insinuates privilege. Because it suggests weakness. Because it's strange for women to be at home with children, and also working jobs. Because it's strange for women to be at home working jobs that don't seem very job-like.

And it is strange.

Why does your house always look so clean?

How do you have time to work?

How do you do it all?

I have help, that's how. I have an incredible woman who works here from 7am to 2pm five days a week. And she helps me with my kids and she helps me with the house and she helps she helps she helps. And I pay her a large part of my salary to do that. So that I can work. So that I can write things that may or not go anywhere. So that I can write this post that may or may not matter. So that I can do what I love and feel sane and happy and myself.

And there is nothing wrong with that.

"There's nothing wrong with that," I say to myself.

So why has "nanny" become such a loaded word? Why are we, as women, so reluctant to talk about the people we hire to help us so that we can do what we do? What are we afraid of? People thinking we CAN'T do it all?

Well, duh.

We fucking can't.

So what's this big secret we're trying to keep and who do we think we're fooling?

And what is it doing to people who read our blogs and books and pin our how-tos and think that all of these projects are being finished while children sit quietly on the sidelines with their hands in their laps.

What is it doing to you?

We write disclosure copy on posts that are sponsored, giveaways that are donated. We are contractually obligated to label and link but where is the disclosure copy stating how we work from home with small children? How we shoot videos and meet deadlines and go to meetings and travel around the country attending conventions and conferences.

We have help, that's how!

We have INCREDIBLE and much beloved (worshipped, actually) help!"

1 comment:

  1. Awesome awesome post I could really use some help in my work-life balance but am just not sure it's worth the cost. I'm sure it is, but I'm just not ready to commit yet.


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