What They Wanted Me to Be

When I was a young girl
it was clear to me
that there was a role for me
to be in the family.
It involved beauty and grace.
The right husband, house and children.
The family rules were to be obeyed.
Do not rebel,
Do not make waves,
Do not embarrass the family…
meaning the extended family.
What a child, young or adult did
reflected on the parents,
and the entire extended family
would hold the parents accountable.
The right husband meant that he had
to meet the requirements of a high paying job,
and in the new world,
my generation,
the highest of education degrees
with a grade point average to be  with honors.
Some jobs were not acceptable,
high enough on the social scale….
in other words,
no bragging rights came with some jobs.
The husband needed to be good looking,
nice build, not over weight or look sloppy.
A pleasant personality, at least in public,
with family and family friends.
A wife was expected to keep her husband happy,
if there was a problem,
it “is always the wife’s fault.” It is her problem if she
and her husband have difficulties,
and divorce was not an option,
unless it was because the husband didn’t have
high enough standards that weren’t seen during
the courtship and couldn’t be corrected in marriage.
They wanted me to be someone I wasn’t.
“There is always a husband to take care of a woman”
I was told by my mother in front of someone
whose husband had died.
A woman should not work,
especially at a job like mine…
an RN, will a calling to care for the aging,
confused and bewildered.
No matter that I called the shots
and standards were exceptional.
And my divorce was unacceptable,
embarrassing and “the first”.
They wanted me to be slim,
my children to excel in what mattered to them.
They wanted me to be
something that I tried to be be,
and failed, in everyone’s eyes
for I could not be molded or kept
under control.
I’ve come to accept they wanted me to be
what they only knew from their experience
in life examples and teachings.

August 9, 2011 Written 7 yaars ago and never posted