Chick-Fil-A or Bust

A glorious email from FRANCES today made me feel more human than I have in a LONG time.

Let’s just say that Frances, mired in motherhood, had a stressful last few days. So thusly she hired a babysitter and took herself on a seriously needed, two-part Me-Date: first to The Mall, where she partook of the breaded goodness of Chick-Fil-A, in glorious solitude (just her and a few thousand of her friends), and then, after bedtime, to the bottom of a  (hopefully large) margarita glass.

More cows should wear ONE FOAM FINGER, and more Moms should admit that being a Mom is really hard. Every woman I’ve ever known who became a mother before me told me, (in what I perceived as a snotty, know-it-all voice), that to BE A MOM is something I can never understand, until I am one.

Well, let me tell you.

That cow gets to wash its face, hang up the wig and put the ad slogans away. The Chick-Fil-A countergirl who despise her uniform and who hates working in the mall because she sees all the kids from school who point and snicker– well she gets to graduate and to move on, or even to move up, to management, to the Gap, and even to finally pass the driving test and take off across the interstate system in an 18-wheeler.

Even 7-11 has locks on its doors.

But the Mom door is never closed, never locked. Her uniform every piece of clothes she wears, knowing full well it will get smeared with snot and ketchup, puked on with milk, at any hour of the day. She knows monotony very well. They’ve been lovers for some time now. She’ll knows she’ll never get that honorary degree in organizational management she deserves– after all, it isn’t real work.

If she’s lucky, she might get an hour eating Chick-Fil-A, alone in the foodcourt, and good drink at the end of the world’s longest day.

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Elizabeth Howard

Elizabeth writes literary non-fiction, haiku, cultural rants, and Demand Poetry in order to forward the cause of beautiful writing. She teaches and speaks about the rhetorical impact of beautiful writing. A recent transplant to Connecticut, she calls London, Kansas City, and Iowa home.

 

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  4 comments for “Chick-Fil-A or Bust

  1. Stacy Kearney
    October 19, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    Who’s telling you it isn’t real work? You won’t hear that bs from me or Bryan. It’s a hard job, a never ending job, a thankless job, and quite rewarding – ketchup, snot, and all. Love you!

  2. Tammy Luke
    October 20, 2009 at 5:13 am

    Raise that margarita glass high lady!!

  3. October 20, 2009 at 6:03 am

    Stacy, our social culture that recreates single mothers as virgin whores (yeah those kids DID come from somewhere!), have been fighting against national health care for years, ostracized Monica Lewinsky and made Bill Clinton a national hero, and who continually create shows like “Cougar Town” in a desperate attempt to keep the woman distracted and down.

  4. October 20, 2009 at 7:23 am

    Elizabeth, you are very right… motherhood is just about the most under-appreciated job there is.

    Hang in there. I’m glad you can take joy in the few moments you have to yourself. Take some consolation in the fact that as they grow older, you will have a little more time to catch your breath. Particularly if you say no to the pressure for them to take part in every available activity (soccer, ballet, piano, and on and on).

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