I don’t have a title for this post yet. I’m hoping that, by the end, one comes to me.
It’s been a busy couple of months. Rhett was finally released to go back to work yesterday (he’s still alive, and only needed medication, thank God). Baseball season is upon us. We’re coaches this year – Sharkman is in Minors and it’s a lot more work and more of a time commitment than I anticipated! One hour of practice for the kids means at least two hours for the adults in charge; you can translate what that means for the Saturday two hour practices we run every week! I’m still working in the same place. Mixed blessing, that job. I love what I do, but I hate how I have to do it. If that makes any kind of sense at all.
Construction workers, baseball players, coaches, and truck drivers.
Which leaves me, as usual, as the token girl in a sea of testosterone.
I don’t mind it. I love my boys; I choose to work in male-dominant fields. I pays my money, I takes my choices. I mean, I know how this works.
It means that, when I go to work, if I have a problem with someone, it’s going to be because I’m on the rag. It means that, when I’m having a bad day, it’s because of my boobs before it’s because of something going on in my life. It means that, when I speak up and speak loudly, I’m a bitch, not a person with a concern.
It means that I am taken less seriously, that I have to work harder to prove myself, that I have to prove myself over and over again.
I know all of these things and I accept them. So I have no excuse to whine about them when they start getting on my nerves.
But then there’s the fact that, when I spend this much time in Testosterone Land, I start pulling this kind of crap on myself.
I start dismissing my own feelings. Instead of saying, “I think you’re acting like an ass because,” I say “I’m just acting like a girl.” Instead of talking about how I reacted to x or y or z, I shove it aside and keep going. When someone asks me what’s wrong, I brush it off.
I’m a genius at fitting in with the boys. To the point that I internalize their attitudes towards women and apply all that societal garbage to myself.
When a guy (whatever gender origin or identity they claim) is in a shitty mood, they’re just in a shitty mood. But if a girl is in a shitty mood, it’s because of something to do with her gender/hormones and not really a “real” mood at all.
I fucking hate that.
Never did come up with a title.
I hate that I feel apologetic for being stressed out, or tired, or getting my feelings hurt. I hate that I am always the peacekeeper, the one who reaches out to smooth things over, that I can’t just let it lie and feel validated in my own responses. I hate that I feel like I’m not allowed to be angry or sad or scared on my own. I mean, it’s not like I don’t have reason to feel those things.
But what I really hate is that it is somehow socially acceptable for me to blame myself for my reactions, while my reactions themselves aren’t acceptable at all. Don’t get me wrong; the stereotypes exist for a reason. There are some crazy bitches out there. I deal with them every day. And don’t let’s forget that I dated women, so I know all about that.
But I’m not a crazy bitch. I’m a perfectly sane human being with emotional reactions just like everyone else. Mine don’t manifest as often, maybe, but they’re there. They’re not there because I’m producing extra estrogen that day. It’s not my time of the month. My life, just like everybody else’s, is no fucking joke. It’s hard and it’s scary and there’s a lot going on and a lot to keep track of and juggle.
It drives me nuts that I have to tell myself that so that I don’t apologize for being less than cheerful and optimistic and gung-ho about getting out of bed every fucking day.
I want to be able to have a good, old-fashioned temper tantrum without it being assigned to my gender. By me or anybody else.
Is that so goddamn unreasonable?