Sarah is an LA based online marketer and writer navigating her way as the wife of a start-up company owner. Since becoming pregnant, you can usually find her in the fridge.
One day, shortly after moving in with a boyfriend for the first time I woke up alone in bed in a panic. I thought to myself, “Oh my god, I have to finish the dishes from last night, take out the trash and still catch the train to my internship on time.” I showered up and ran downstairs. When I got there, I looked around in amazement, where had the dishes gone and why was the trash empty? My boyfriend had left an hour earlier and later confirmed bemusedly that of course he’d done it before he left and why?
I was in shock and still remember standing frozen in that little West Philly row house kitchen not knowing whether to laugh or cry. I wanted to laugh at my good fortune – I wasn’t going to “do it all” and be a female housemaid and career women all in one – and cry because how had I even let myself think for one moment that I would submit so meekly into that old-fashioned wife role. It was one of the most important “eureka” moments of my life – I was acting out a previous generation’s husband and wife model without realizing it.
Fast-forward to matronly, preggers me staying last weekend at my friend’s parents’ house in Palm Springs. Coincidentally (or not, we’re the same age) my friend was also pregnant and had a little one to boot. The comments and looks from her father-in-law were enough to make me shiver. He represented the old, totalitarian regime, his wife grumbled, but still brought him chocolate-covered strawberries from the pantry fridge whenever he had a hankering. When my husband walked in with an appetizing sandwich, the ole gaffer demanded to know where his was and she coyly pointed out that he had made it, “himself”, like it was a novel idea.
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