Happy butt sweat day everyone!

I have tried to start a “tradition” of asking the kids what is the most interesting thing that happened to you today, when we drive home from school.

Partly to avoid them arguing about who is looking out of whose windows, and partly so that I give the impression of being a patient, kind and interested parent.  Something about faking it until you make it.

I have tried this several times, and after many attempts and it always ending in “nothing” …. “so nothing happened today” …. “meh … nothing” … “so I am taking you to a school where you learn and you really learn nothing ALL day … not one thing” … “….{shrug}…”

I am so very glad I get to have the surly teenage phase whilst my kids are 8 and 12 respectively.

Yesterday I fetch Georgia and Connor, and Georgia is really excited.

She is bursting to tell me what happened in her day.

We all get in the car, buckle up, I reverse and I am waiting eagerly for her story.

The story that is going to help cement what a great parent I am, and how much my kids are inspired and learn in the school system I entrust them to each and every day.

Georgia: “Today, my pants and my shorts were wet ….”

Me: “Okay, did you not make it to the bathroom in time?”

Georgia: “No, it was not wet by the front end, it was wet by the butt end.”

Me – really struggling to pick up on the thread of this story – “Did you sit in something?”

Georgia: “No, today is the first day I had butt sweat!!”

She was not announcing this like I would announce that I had a bit of a leak on my pants because I could not get to the bathroom on time, and my bladder’s ability to keep a “tight ship” has started to decline in the last two or three years – she was telling this story like it was a wild achievement. Something to be proud of.

She went on.  And on.  For 45 minutes explaining butt sweat to me.  And her butt sweat specifically.

45 minutes is a very long time to talk about butt sweat.  Sober.  And trapped in a car with no where to go.

Eventually I just nodded and said “ah-huh” because there really is not much else to say on the subject.

She was so excited – it was a bit like Louis Pasteur working out the kinks to the rabies problem, but this was Georgia who was telling me it was so hot that she had made butt sweat.

I decided that it was the best story of the day and “high fived” her!

Seriously what were my options?

Can you be a Musketeer withouth a pen.i.s?

Monday’s post did make me angry.

Granted I wrote it when I was angry, by the time I posted it I was less angry.

It really was something that sits with me, and makes me angry – some days more than others.  Some times I see a child dressed in a particular way and I think “what the hell?” and sometimes I want to choose an outfit for my own child and I think “yeah, I am not sure what that message is sending ….”

My earlier post might have come out in a bit of a splutter as it has been sitting in my head for some time, and when ever I see these images or I hear someone say “stop acting like a girl!” I get really angry.

Most part because I am a girl.

To indicate that “someone acts like a girl” is often used when you are trying to say someone is acting silly/childish/weak/inferior.

When Connor cries or get’s upset, Kennith is quick to say: “Stop behaving like a girl!” or “You are crying like a girl now!”  (this is not trying to paint him as the villain, I am indicating what is said in our house as an illustration, odds are it is said in your home as well, and pretty much everywhere actually.)

It really makes me angry. Like seeing red angry.  That is when he is not being a good egg.

I have raised the issue with Kennith, and have decided to no longer raise the issue with him, and instead raise it with the kids – we can call it direct intervention or circumvention, which ever is easiest to digest in couple
therapy.

There are so many derogative terms associated with women and girls.  And we feed them to our children often without realising it.

“Boys don’t cry – girls do!”

“Stop acting like a girl, be brave!”

“haha you are being such a girl ……”

Most of them I do not even register any more.

Today when I fetched Georgia, she was spluttering and telling me that one of the boys at school told her she could not be “one of those people who guard the king and queen with a feather in their hat…” and she was
really upset.

I love lateral thinking word games.

Connor said: ‘ Robin Hood’

I went: ‘A Musketeer’

Georgia said, yes, a musketeer that was what she was thinking of.

Bless that girl.  I have no idea why she wants to be a musketeer, and this is the first I have heard of this particular ambition or career move.

The boys at her school said that she could not be a musketeer because she was a girl.

And GIRLS cannot be musketeers …. well clearly because some well-meaning person told these little boys that.

They in turn told Georgia, and Georgia was not really settling for NOT being a musketeer just because some snotty dirty boy told her she couldn’t be.

When I arrived to fetch Georgia at school today, she was standing with of 4 boys having a heated conversation and clearly this is what it was about.

I am not really a feminist and am not planning on pulling out that soap box nor my copy of Virginia Wolf and brandishing it about in the name of suffragettes everywhere!

But it is important for my girls to know that they can do anything and become anything they want (not want others decide they can be, because “that is what girls do.”)

At the same time I want Connor to know that because he is a boy, does not automatically make him superior to girls.

I gave Georgia a lecture in the car drive home today, that if she wanted to be a musketeer that was fine, it was no problem at all, she could be anything she wanted to be.  Nothing was limited to her “because she was a girl.”

I also explained to her that to be Queen she did not need a King (as most fairy tales go).

I explained that the present Queen of England, is Queen in her own right, and that her husband is actually Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and he is not a King.

She is the Queen, he is only a Duke – so that is how that works out.

<I also gave her a quick history lesson on Queen Elizabeth, and how she became Queen.  And though there was pressure on her to marry as she was of the ‘weak sex’ she knew she could rule Britain and continued to do so until she died – unmarried, though we can have a very long conversation about the Virgin Queen title.>

In no way am I trying to foster an environment of female domination – or “chicks rule the world” but I want my girls to know that of all the things standing between them and become a musketeer (if that is what they
really want) is not a va.gina and bre.asts.

Granted, it might be some other factors, but it is not going to be because they are girls.