Today I simply want to applaud men and work.
Watching men work is such an interesting phenomenon. When men do hard labour, it is poetry in motion. I mean men pick stuff up so easily and they move with such grace as they flow through the tasks that to a woman may seem monumental.
And it is almost as if they truly enjoy these tasks and I truly believe that men like to work; they really do.
I just travelled abroad recently and observed men working; everywhere! In restaurants, clothing stores, party places, grocery stores; you name it and they were there. And do you know what else I saw? I saw them with happy faces, great customer service and a genuine appreciation that they actually had a job and an honest way to make a living. I saw one guy in a restaurant, good looking, young and strong, with a mop bucket in his hand and a beautiful smile on his face while he was mopping up a mess on the floor!
And I thought wow, now here is our problem in the Cayman Islands. Not too many in the younger generation or the male population are whistling while they work in these ‘menial’ jobs even though they may not be skilled for much more or even just simply have been affected by the economic downturn and are maybe “in between” jobs. However, those men that I observed, some with wedding rings on their finger, had apparently embraced the bigger picture. Times are tough and you do what you have to do to make an honest living to take care of yourself and in some cases your family and have money in your pocket to live your life.
After work that mop bucket is put down, you have had a bath, the clothing is changed and no one knows or cares what you do for a living; mostly they just care if you can sustain yourself and are not a burden to anyone else.
So my question is: have we missed that somehow and how do we get it back?
We need men to step up to the plate and take care of their responsibilities. We have travelled too far from tradition where the sweat of our brow is how we shall eat and somehow we have gotten stuck.
Remember when men were the head of the home and when they actually took care of the family?
Women are providers often by default but this does not in any way promote that men are to be taken care of financially because he does not want a certain job.
What does that mean anyway? Are you working? Do you have your own money? If the answer is no, then there should be no excuse for not wanting to work certain places that are honest and a way to make a living. If you have children you should be able to provide for them, if not everything, then at least the essentials. And ladies let us just stop making excuses for our men to not live up to their responsibilities and get out of their way so they can provide for us as they should.
Yes we are independent and have our own money but from this angle it looks like we have made it too easy for men to not do what they are supposed to be doing; taking care of business. Our independence has crippled them and now we are exhausted from carrying it all. Tired of being the woman, the nurturer, the provider, and just plain tired!
Maybe it is time to get back to that mentality of “the sweat of your brow does feed you” and see where that gets each of us. Work is good and feeding yourself is better than anything so run tell that! And tell me how your week is going at [email protected]
Catherine Tyson is the author of I’m Somebody’s Mama and host of the Lighten Up Show With Catherine Tyson on Cayman 27.