So after dropping off Boy-o at school yesterday, I was driving around listening to CBC waiting out Girlio's carnap so that we could meet up with a friend. And I was tremendously enjoying the conversation between a feminist ethicist and some other person who annoyed me about the continued trend towards older motherhood in our generation. The 'some other person who annoyed me', we'll call her SOPWAM for short, was raising some really quite alarmist perspectives about the mean age of new mothers being 30.7 years of age, such as the next generation of children will be increasingly orphaned, and saddled with their old ailling parents far too soon, etc. etc. She was pretty negative about 'older mothering' and basically insinuating that older mothers shouldn't have access to reproductive technologies just because they missed the boat, so to speak. And the other speaker, an ethicist, kept raising these perfectly wonderful points like the fact that women of our generation are having kids later and later because they feel like they have to choose between raising children and having a career, because women/mothers are discriminated against in the workforce, because there isn't meaningful support for parenting in a way that lets women pursure parenting and a career (easily accesible,affordable daycare, etc. etc.) At any rate - this bit is besides the point...
It was such a great listen - I was feeling really engaged and into the discussion, talking back to the woman who was clearly wrong (erm, I mean, with whom I was disagreeing), and nodding in agreement when her sparring partner hit a particularly salient point. It felt great to be envigorated and engaged (albeit by myself!) in this great intellectual argument.
And then, SOPWAM said something along the lines of: "I wasn't a stay at home mom, I'm one of those career women who had dreams and goals for myself...." the sentence went on, but it was totally lost on me.
I could literally feel my self-esteem sinking.
(It likely fell somewhere between the break and gas pedals, on the floor of the car in which I was driving my napping daughter, en route from dropping off my son, in the throes of my little, little, little, dreamless, goal-less life).
It might have even made a little plinking sound as it went.
I felt myself completely tune out.
I felt myself totally dismissed.
Newsflash lady: everyone has dreams and goals for themselves... even l'il ole 'houeswives.'