Friday, April 18, 2008

Stereotyping

I really try hard not to stereotype people because they've always bothered me so much. For instance, almost everytime I meet someone new one of the first things out of their mouths is, "Wow, you're really tall, do you play basketball?" Immediatly the little hairs on the back of my neck rise like a cat about to hiss. Ahhhh! "No, I answer, I'm just tall. I was horrible at basketball and I only ever played because my dad wanted me too." Then, because the person that asks this question is usually short, I try and restrain myself from asking if they play miniture golf. Well, it's logical, right!

In reality, I'm pretty lucky if the only reason people stereotype me is because I'm tall. But now, as Mike and I start our family I feel under scruitiny again! I'm sure many of you have felt this, people really like to start to judge the decisions you make once you start to have children.

So here are the things people have questioned about our parenting thus far (oh, please keep in mind, this baby still has four more months to cook before he gets to meet the critics!)

1.) My Mini Cooper - Yes I'm six foot tall and I drive a Mini Cooper. This alone seems to confuse people. Now they are sure I'll be trading it for a Mini van. All of you out there who really know me, know that I will never drive a Mini van. I know everyone says they'll never drive a mini van. But they probably didn't build their own Mini Cooper "S" model online to have it built in England and shipped to St. Louis where they then flew to pick it up. No, they probably drove a Chevy Cavilier or a Honda Civic and I think those are much easier cars to transition into a mini van. (Oh and yes I know I'm stereotyping on the car thing.) So, the Mini is staying. It does have a back seat and is small. I will agree it's not the ideal car for a baby and baby seat, but it's here to stay for at least another year. If you're still worried about the Mini being safe please go to http://www.miniusa.com/mini-cooper-passive-safety-features.html#/learn/FACTS_FEATURES_SPECS/safety/Passive_Safety_Features-m

2.) The convertable crib - Everyone is recommending them, but I don't like them. I'm sorry! They are more expensive, look like baby daybeds and I just want the look of an actual crib. So maybe in a few years when baby needs his first big bed, I'll write a blog saying, "I wish I would have gotten the convertable crib," but right now a crib crib, is being shipped from Target.com and that's what he gets.

3.) Cloth diapers - I know, ya'll are thinking I'm crazy. But back at you for spending thousands of dollars a year on diapers that fill up our landfills and give your kids diaper rash just to make things easier! I'll be putting the saved money in my sons college savings - so there.

4.) Is Mike going to get a different job - This topic has been under debate for most of our marriage. My husband is currently a waiter at Taxi's restaurant here in Omaha. He has been going to school and will get his degree in May, yay! He has also been trying to get on the Omaha Fire Department for the last few years. On the side, he also owns some apartments with his father and a partner, has a Neb. real estate licence, is a paramedic and is currently starting his own auto sales business. So when people ask what my husband does, I usually say he's an entrepeneur. He lives his life very different from most men who work eight to five. It's taken me the first two years of our marriage and plenty of fights to understand he's never going to work in an office and in fact (shock) he'd rather wait tables for the rest of his life than work in an office.

Now with the baby coming some people are worried about his career path. We've heard things like, "What about 401K, health benefits, retirement?" All great concerns, true. But here is the part that irritates me and the sterotyping, I recieve all of the above benefits, I work eight to five and somedays eight to longer. I have the office job, the stable job and the chance to get promotions. Now, turn the tables, if me a mere woman, were to be the one waiting tables and Mike had my job do you think anyone would say a word? My guess is no, and that is the part that bothers me. I mean, it really bother me!

So, to all of you who wonder..."What will Mike do?" Well, he'll continue to be a great husband, he'll continue to do all of the laundry, make most of the meals, keep the house clean, mow the lawn and do handy projects around the house (he does all of this without complaining). He'll dream up new businesses, help his friends with projects, buy crazy things on Ebay and then sell them for more. But now, he'll also be able to stay home with our son at least one day a week while I'm at work, take him over to his grandma's in the mornings, get up with him in the night, wash out his diapers, stay home with him when he's sick, and most importantly love him.

What more could a mom ask for?

5 comments:

The Kennedy's said...

One thing I've noticed becoming a mom, is that you will get so much unwanted advice it will drive you bonkers...to the point where you might even question your ability as a parent. Take what you want and run with it and don't even look back at the advice you don't want. Seriously, I have more than once driven myself to tears thinking I wasn't doing things like other parents...but I finally realized you just have to do what works for you and your baby and forget about everyone else!! Love ya, Jolyn

Sarah said...

No matter what you do, people ALWAYS have an opinion. The advice will keep coming...and coming and coming :) Let it roll off, and do whats best for your family and what works for you guys!

Love you tall lady :)

naomi said...

i think we all get it in one form or another, are they all yours? your doing what? you are a incredible and beautiful, and you and mike are going to be wonderful parents, mini cooper and all. pick your own path and don't look back. seems that the ones that pick you apart are the ones that have fear of the life they could live.

gal said...

Yee Haa! A cloth diaper user! It was not that bad and very cheap! Grandma Carrie would be proud of you Shelli! When my mom was little they used cloth for the "monthly" - how would ya like that! You'll both do great and try and remember that those who give you unwanted advice usually do so out of love and not necessarily because they know more than you. Follow your heart and all will be well. Love you guys...gal

Beth said...

I LOVE THIS POST!!!!( I am married to Sarah's husbands cousin, I also got her blogging!)
I too as a tall person always hated the basketball player question too!!!! OR are you a stewardess?!?!?!?! where does THAT come from!!!!???
I think once I got fat they quit asking the b-ball player question, so at least you look fit enough to play! there is the bright side!
AND I love how real you are about the hubs! WE ARE ALL DIFFERENT!!! Our marriages are all different! What we want and need is all different!!!kudos to you for standing up to the stereotypes! I love it!
love this post!
OH! I NEVER looked pregnant...even at the end of the pregnancy ( I would tell people he was just standing up in there...I am tall you know!)...only fat.....you on the other hand...look adorable!