Daily Archives: February 13, 2012
Hi, I’m Ordale. I’m a househusband and stay at home dad. Those job titles are as stressful as they are emasculating.
There’s a double standard in society. If a man works and his wife stays at home then he’s a good provider. If, however, that same man complains to his stay at home wife about dishes in the sink or dinner not being ready at six then he is an insensitive bastard because staying home with a kid is difficult work. Now turn around and make that man stay home and send the woman out and all of a sudden the guy is lazy because watching kids becomes easy the minute you no longer have a vagina.
Ask any of the old women who sneer at me when they see me pushing a stroller and they’ll tell you that men are supposed to work. I’m supposed to grab a spear and head out into the urban jungle to hunt squirrels and pigeons to feed my family. Never mind that I get up at seven each morning to begin a day of servitude for a small human who is both the reason behind every smile I’ll ever have for the rest of my life and simultaneously the inspiration for every movie about exorcisms.
This shit aint easy. I grocery shop, cook everything from scratch, do laundry, doctor visits, diaper changes, tantrum negotiations, field trips, library story times and actually do daycare lessons in house everyday. I’m on the job 24-7 and besides that time I was rushed to the hospital for kidney failure, I haven’t missed a single day. And even then my daughter docked my pay for an unscheduled absence. By 5 months she could crawl, 9 months she could walk, 10 months she made the switch to English from whatever elf language they speak in Middle Earth and by 18 months she knew the ABCs, could count to 20, navigate an iPad and the doctors said she was at a two year old level.
So everytime I see these old women staring at me or someone’s mother speaks out of turn I tell myself that they aren’t making those faces because they’re looking down on me. They’re looking at me because they haven’t seen me before. I’m a goddamned superman, a centaur, a mythical creature you’d find in Narnia: A Black man that takes care of his kid. I’m a big foot with big shoes and I cast a big shadow. And all it costs me to do this job is pride. I can live with that because I’m repaid for it everyday when she does something new.
And if you think I’m bad…wait until tomorrow when I tell you about my wife.