My mother grew up in Utah and was raised in the epicenter of the obedient female. God-fearing housewives listen to their husbands a little too much in my opinion, but whatever keeps the home fires burning. She knew one thing for certain, and that was that she would never raise a child there. She moved us to the woods and I grew up knowing I was capable of anything a boy was, and most likely twice as fast.
I’ve always been stuck somewhere in the middle of red lipstick and garden boots. I have an extensive collection of garden tools and can fix the rototiller by myself (finally!), while simultaneously rocking some eyelash extensions and breast implants.
I’m not like the other girls.
Sometimes that really sucks, and I think it has a lot to do with my self-sustaining singlehood. I don’t ask for help and I certainly don’t wait for it even when I need it. I’ll do everything myself, or die trying.
I took a vacation to see my closest Aunt one winter, years ago. I came home to a blizzard and ran to the garage to get a pound of ground beef from my chest freezer. Only to discover the power was off. I looked at the breaker box to see if one had flipped, to see a branch had come through the roof and obliterated the entire thing.
Now most people would call someone. I realize this. I didn’t have the money or the desire to ask for help, so I went to Home Depot. I bought a book called “How to: Electricity” a new box and a few boxes of wire. The man working in that department was white as a ghost with fear and urged me to reconsider. I came home to see the electricity arcing at the top of the power pole above the garage. It was glowing red in the dark, night sky. I shook my head at myself and went inside to shut off the breaker to the garage from the main panel.
I’d Googled. I knew the basics. I also knew that electricity didn’t fuck around and you needed to be damn sure it was off. I disconnected the main line in and capped them off. The rest was a miserable skinned knuckle adventure of wire, needle nosed pliers and staples. It’s been working great now for over 10 years, so I’m pretty damn proud.
Or really fucking lucky.
It’s my greatest gift and biggest curse, this inability of mine to need. I want plenty of things, but I’ve worked very hard to provide everything I need for myself and my babies. That is awfully intimidating to men.
I have my own home, a rich, full life, earn my own money, and have a list of options long enough to make the most secure man, not. I’ve worked hard to achieve and attain those things and it’s been solely on my own steam. I’m proud of that, and surprised that it’s more threatening than inspirational when dealing with the opposite sex.
I’m the Queen of my castle and the benevolent ruler of my peaceful kingdom. There may never be a King, but there may not be room for one and I’m ok with that.
The worst thing I can imagine would be to give all this hard-earned freedom, independence and success away.
A date? Some sex? Someone to carry my heavy stuff and open my doors?
For as much as I struggle to let go of the man I adore, I’d rather sit around missing him forever than settle for less or give my power away.