So what, you may be asking, is this Invisible Woman stuff? (Does it have to do with the movie … no, not at all.) You see, I am the invisible woman, and I can guess that a lot of woman in my situation may feel that same way. Some years ago I read a book about a woman we decided she wanted to be herself. She described how she realized she was defining herself first as someone’s daughter, then as someone’s wife, and lately as someone else’s mother. All of them were valid, but none of them described who she was separate from another person. And so she set out to find herself.
Now this finding one’s self seems to be a litany you hear over and over, but what exactly does that mean? If you lived alone, completely alone, what would you do with your time? How would you live? What decisions would you make that were not colored by the knowledge that they would impact in some way on other people. It was an interesting book, and the woman did indeed find herself, and she did it while remaining a devoted wife and mother. Alas, I loaned the book and it never returned. And I have forgotten the title (I’ll look for it and post the title here when I find it. It’s worth a read.)
So how is this being invisible? Think about it. When I went out with my husband, polite people acknowledged my presence, but no one really asked my opinion. My husband did all the talking. I was invisible. A while back I went to a local college to sign up for some classes. I waited quite a while before I approached one of the staff and mentioned that I had been waiting, could I be next? She apologized and said she thought I was with someone else! She didn’t specify who that might have been; probably someone who looked more like a potential student. This was not an isolated incident I have been overlooked by clerks on a number of occasions, and had to announce my presence before I could get served. Worse was in teacher’s department meeting when I was rarely able to get the director’s attention unless I stood up and loudly announced that I had something to say. Only then did they listen. Since I always had something worthwhile to add to proceeding, I was confused by this reluctance to listen to me. Then I realized that the males would speak more often with each other, and the women on the staff would have to demand a hearing.
Sour grapes? Perhaps. But it’s the truth. I pointed this out to a male friend who was skeptical until he saw it happening. The situation is getting better now that I know how to be more assertive and not wait politely to be recognized.
And so I have decided to create a blog where I can share ideas, express opinions, and air some of the papers I have written and that will never be seen otherwise. I hope this will be a dialogue, and I welcome to comments of other women who feel as if they are also invisible. I also welcome comments from males, many of whom are my very good friends. I’m also going to share my artwork, and some music videos. I’ve written a number of music books for the bowed psaltery (look it up), and more recently I’m learning to finger-pick on the mountain dulcimer. And I have dogs, specifically an Australian Cattle Dog … Mr. Taz, and his little (?) sister, Rio, a Border Collie who will come to live with us in April 2016. There will definitely be posts and photographs of these furkids.
So come along with me … this blog should be interesting. Don’t expect me to write every single day. As I said, I’m planning to spend more time away from the computer. But I also have a collection of articles to share.