Lately I’ve been contemplating my life. You only need to read a few of my more recent posts to understand what I’m talking about …

Set The Scene

Last month I had to go and have my fingerprints taken at the traffic department. No big deal, it was for my SA Drivers License. Unfortunately the machine was struggling to read my prints.

The lady operating the fingerprint machine suggested that I put some hand-cream on. Apparently this is quite common and in cases like this the machine finds it easier to scan your fingerprints if you put on hand-cream or something similar. I don’t know why. I didn’t ask either as she was gesturing to my oversized handbag, expecting me to whip some out!

Sh*t!

I made the pretense of rummaging through my bag, supposedly looking for some, knowing full well that I don’t have any. Obviously, as with most women on the planet, I knew exactly all the contents of my handbag. And so I knew that there wasn’t any hand-cream in there. But I felt like I should at least pretend to look for it, because in that moment I was suddenly feeling very ‘judged’.

When I, unsurprisingly, came up empty, she was shocked! I actually wish I could have taken a picture of her face in that moment. Her mouth was hanging open and everything! lol

via GIPHY

Almost Like That …

She eventually closed her mouth, took a deep breath, found her tongue and said to me …

“How can you not have any hand cream, are you even a woman?”

It was said in jest, we both laughed, and then she proceeded to offer me some of her’s. It worked, my fingerprints were read and I was out of there.

When I left there though, it got me thinking …

On this seemingly twisted and uphill journey along the path of motherhood … have I somehow misplaced my womanhood?

I don’t carry hand-cream in my hand-bag. In fact I don’t even have a hair brush in there anymore. I’m pretty sure it was removed about six months ago to brush one of the numerous My Little Pony’s mane – and never returned. #momlife

I certainly haven’t missed it. What is in my bag are

  • my purse,
  • roll-on,
  • car keys,
  • house keys,
  • a Troll or two,
  • some copper coins,
  • a hair-band or five,
  • a used tissue,
  • Lip-ice (NOT Lipstick because my kids have probably stolen it!)
  • Oh, and a few of those sweets they give you when you pay at a restaurant.

Does that make me less of a woman?

I realised today that I haven’t actually had my hair done professionally in over eight months. My badly done ‘blonde/yellow’ highlights are now at least an inch over-grown but it is finally the perfect length to wrap in a neat ‘Mom-Bun’.

If I go to the hairdresser they will end up cutting it and then my Mom-bun style won’t work. The thought of having to ‘do’ my hair every day … well, that just isn’t going to happen!

Does that make me less of a woman?

What about the fact that I don’t own, or even want to own a pair of high heels anymore. I think I have a pair of gold wedges somewhere but the last time I looked they were in the girls’ dress-up box!

For about a year before my hip replacements (age 33/34) I was so determined that I would one day wear heels again. Now two years later, I really, really see no point in them.

I think other women look stunning, poised and beautiful in them, IF they can walk in them. You know what? They don’t even have to walk in them, if they can stand up straight in them without it looking like they are about to fall over, they deserve to wear them and be admired for that. If not, then please just take them off?!

But for me … that’s okay thanks. I’ll stick with my flats. I mean, if I can’t even walk in heels, how the hell am I supposed to run after a four-year-old who can’t grasp the fact that ‘Cars Will Run You Over!’ whilst also carrying a bag of groceries, an oversized handbag filled with nothing and dragging the six-year-old who lives in her own world half the time? Seriously!?!

Does that make me less of a woman?

A few weeks ago I was fixing my makeup (for what it’s worth – we must have been going somewhere fancy …) and after about an hour of wearing it half had melted off in the summer heat. There was more on hands (I’m a face toucher) than there was left on my face. I spoke my thoughts out loud and said “I wish there was some kinds of spray-on ‘sealant’ that stops your makeup melting off your face.”

My then THIRTEEN year-old step-daughter looked at me with a face filled with horror, shock, and a touch of pity (almost like the lady from the traffic department). It turns out there is such a product, and it’s been available for years, if not decades. You can even buy it from your local pharmacy beauty counter. Who knew? Not me.

I still haven’t bought any, but I will … eventually. #lifegoals

Does that make me less of a woman?

I don’t wear lipstick. In fact the last lipstick I bought was for my daughter to wear to her dance concert in October last year. It’s a shocking orange colour reminiscent of those neon sunblock face pains that were popular in the 90s on Durban beaches and with cricket fans … I’m not even going to post a picture. I’m sure anyone over the age of 25 remembers them … No? Just me then? Don’t lie to yourself!

Does that make me less of a woman?

One of the other reasons I don’t wear lipstick is because I have permanently chapped lips. I might get away with three or four days in a row where they aren’t dry and cracked, but normally they are. Lipstick on ‘that’ looks like a hack ‘house painter’ painting over a wall riddled with cracks. It’s positively pointless and not very pretty.

So instead of lipstick I use lip gloss, in a shiny nude or pale pink colour, barely noticeable. I think I’ve had the same bottle in my bag for over a year. As a mum of two little girls I see that as an achievement in itself, but that’s a topic for a different post.

Does that make me less of a woman?

I don’t have the answer for all these questions. Let’s face it, this is not even one of those soul-searching posts. I hope you laughed a little.

The reality is that I know there are many Stay At Home Mums of little kids who rock the perfect hair, make-up, heels and handbags that contain hand-cream, but that’s not me. You guys rock! You are what I aspire to be … some days, when I’m ‘going out’. However, the reality for me is that I just don’t, can’t and won’t.

Maybe it’s that in itself that might make me less of a woman. Maybe I’m not less of a woman, maybe I’m “just” a mum. I can live with that. Maybe that’s just me. And that’s okay. I’m happy with ‘just me’.

Don’t worry … before you feel too sorry for me, I know that I Am More Than Just A Mum.  The subject of ‘am I even a woman anymore’ isn’t even really important considering all the other more important things that I need to concern myself with as mum of girls.

Admire someone elses' beauty without questioning your own.