There are few greater questions as a woman you must ask than “do I want to be a Mum?”. Whether you ask that question and make a plan, or when the test shows up pink, the answer you find inside ultimately defines the woman you’ll become. To be,or not to be?
For me, there was no doubt. I longed for it; in a way always had. There was no real to be or not to be moment – it was always going to, God willing, be. But that doesn’t mean that by knowing the answer to the biggest question you know the woman you’ll become. The process from pink line to Mum is a long one and 21 days into MK’s life, I have no idea who this being my son calls ‘Mummy,’ is; even less who she’ll grow to be.
Turkish and British definitions of femininity, and feminism itself, differ somewhat. Whereas I was taught gender neutrality, G was taught the differences between the sexes. whereas my equality definition was women doing and being everything a man could be, his has always been based on promoting the inherently different gender roles between a woman and a man. The feminism of my generation taught me to escape my gender, forgo femininity itself to carry on the feminist dream the suffragettes had wasted so many bras burning. The feminism of his? Embrace it.
Looking at my to-do list for during MK’s nap time, I can’t help but wonder what my ten-year-ago self would have made of such a list, can’t help wonder who she’d see. Rewind the clocks and you’ll find little to indicate a future with flower arranging involved. But does that mean the me of then has been exchanged for the me of now? And if so, will the Mummy of now look back and see someone as remote as the person I see looking back today? Feminism isn’t about competing with men to see who comes out ‘on top’: there is no ‘top’. There’re only individual people with individual ladders to climb. For now at least, at my ladders top is being the best Mum -and the best wife and friend- I can be. Feminism works for me by allowing me to be the female that’s implied. My feminism, is G’s feminism, is femininity itself. I’m a breastfeeding, nappy changing homemaker who has chosen to most definitely be. And while I still have no idea what kind of Mum I am – even less the kind of Mum I’ll be – I’m looking forward to finding out and praying I’ll like what I find.