I’ve been a software engineer in the professional world for 19 years. I’ve had my share of experiences with other software engineers and managers, shared in both this blog and it’s former incarnation, which have clearly been based in abject sexism, but it has happily always felt like it has been the exception, never the rule.
Recently, my husband sent me this article, though, and I was suddenly filled with RAGE. It suddenly occurred to me on a very basic level just how rampant and deeply-held some of the behaviors we experience are, and how much I’ve normalized them as part of my long-term experience. I’ve changed in real, measurable ways, in terms of how I react to certain situations based on some of this; some of those ways I’m fine with (I’m very one-of-the-boys in terms of what I consider acceptable conversational topics, but that generally fits with my personality and is something that I think attracted my husband to me, besides my HUGE BRAIN OF AWESOME), but others honestly bother me (any time someone tries to help me in a way that I believe reflects on their opinion of my skill or how I can do my job will cause a knee-jerk “I CAN DO THIS, ASSHOLE” reaction; I have terrible impostor syndrome).
Anyway. That article, and my rage as a result, led to a really awful interaction with a guy I used to work… click to enjoy (for certain values of “enjoy”). But, in the midst of all of that, I suddenly had a stark realization about Shanley Kane, who always seemed to me as an extremist who didn’t accurately represent my experience and who, in fact, sometimes made it harder for me to do my job: she is that blind rage, and she is feeling it all the time in order to afford me the places where I can relax and exist and do my job in this environment without constantly seething about things that are so deeply-rooted that it will take generations to undo. What I saw as the things that make her dangerous to me personally (“guys will have reactions to me because they will think that I’m off-the-handle in the same way because we are both female engineers”) are actually important (“guys should check their reactions as being part of a deep-seated need for reflection and change” — because if people group us together because we are both female engineers, THAT IS THE PROBLEM RIGHT THERE). She is choosing to have this rage (as much as anyone can choose how they feel) because the only thing that will possibly have any affect here — if anything can have an affect — is constant pressure on people to see how their behavior is responsible at all levels for the current state that we’re in.
So… that was a weird paradigm shift for me — not about Shanley in specific, but in admitting to myself that my experiences count for something and I am not the only one having them. I’m not a special snowflake in this way, and knowing that … well, knowing that sucks, because I hate thinking about other people having the same ones.
My new job is amazing in many ways. Besides the fact that I am super busy and loving every second of it, they also gave us an extra day off before the Fourth of July, so Brandon also took it off, while the kids enjoyed being at school that day, and we ran errands and had lunch and spent too much time at Costco and enjoyed time together doing things that are super hard to do with kids in tow.
The Fourth itself was a “high needs” kid day, especially for Max — about every third word from his mouth was my name, but it wasn’t as much as he wanted to tell me something as much as he wanted my constant attention. It was a very family day, and we didn’t do anything specific beyond “spend time together”, including time at the school riding bikes and playing. Both kids wanted to stay up for fireworks, but because it gets light so freakin’ late, we thought it would be smarter to watch the NY show on TV… but even though it started at 8, there were so many frickin’ musical guests that the fireworks didn’t start on TV until 9:30, which is when the local show is anyway. I stole outside and found that we couldn’t see anything through the trees, and Katie fell asleep while they were going off, while Max told me that he was tired (this never happens) so I took him to bed and he fell asleep immediately (also never happens). Nicky was fine with the local fireworks because he’s pretty much deaf, but Ash was extremely restless, especially when the particularly loud stuff was going on at the school across the street. He tried to hide in both Max’s and Katie’s room, as well as under the sheets with me, before laying down between the loveseat and table in the front room.
Saturday was our normal routine, for the most part: gymnastics, Home Depot for their weekly kid building stuff event (first Saturday of the month, this time they made bug houses), lunch, swim class, then date night! Woot! Since we’d recently seen all the movies we wanted to (X Men: Days of Future Past, Malificent, The Edge of Tomorrow), we opted to see 22 Jump Street, but because we knew it would be sub-optimal, pre-medicated with a drink at the only place with a bar open pre-5: The Old Spaghetti Factory. Dinner was at Quinto Sol (an old fave) and then we went to the Living Room afterward. The kids were sort of awake by the time we were done but fell asleep painlessly enough.
Finally, Sunday! We took the kids to see How To Train Your Dragon 2, which ended up with me on one seat with Max in my lap (when he wasn’t constantly climbing on the railing ahead of us, good lord that kid can’t sit still at the movies), Katie next to me so that half of her seat was empty, then the rest of that seat and another empty seat between us and Brandon, who ostensibly sat there enjoying his movie and popcorn. Then we went to the mall for some errands and lunch, then ended up at Alex and Patty’s house to swim! Which was fairly amazing because Katie spent most of the time independently swimming by herself, diving for rings without floaties or anything. Max was floatified, and … all I had to do was sit there and watch them. It was amazing.
Happy family! :D
From the last test to now, it looks like I’ve stayed extremely extroverted, moved slightly more intuitive than previously, become slightly less feeling and more thinking, and moved more strongly into perceiving. Apparently these aren’t supposed to change… but I think the fact that I’m typically borderline across S/N and J/P is what causes the apparent shifting.
Influencer sent out VoxBox for moms and people who needed a little TLC last month, and I was one of the people lucky enough to receive one! So, I thought I’d do some quick reviews.
The most interesting and exciting part of this VoxBox was, for me, the Avon Anew Express Wrinkle Smoother. I am SO lucky that thanks to my excellent genetics and commitment to daily SPF on my face, I’ve not got many wrinkles… but I do have the requisite crow’s feet starting up, mainly on ONE eye (the left… thanks, driver’s side window). They don’t bother me too much but I was willing to try this stuff…
It was incredibly soft, which makes sense since it markets itself as a “cream to powder”, and the idea is that you take a little on your finger and then pat it over the offending area. What it seems to be, essentially, is a light diffuser; it doesn’t change the feeling of the skin that you apply it to other than to make it feel more powdery. (I wasn’t sure if it was going to plump up the area, or what.) It did seem to have an effect, however, which I was surprised by — I doubt that it would work for deep wrinkles, like those that can develop around the mouth, but the instructions target the eye area anyway! I definitely would find myself using this if I was going for a formal, finished look… my kids, husband, and coworkers can deal with my very slight wrinkles on a daily basis! HA!
More reviews to come. :D
I was watching Max doing his TKD class the Thursday before last (so 11 days ago) and sitting on the floor. The instructors were having the kids do double kicks into shields, and because it was the under-five class, they were all falling very dramatically every time a kid kicked well. The teacher closest to me, who is also a judo instructor, very dramatically double-rolled backward, right into me. I felt something in my ankle, under the ankle bone, snap somewhat, and tears instantly sprung to my eyes, but I didn’t want him to interrupt the class, so I knee-walked out (thank goodness for the mat) until I got out front, where I told Brandon that I was in quite a bit of pain.
I have no idea what happened, but my ankle still hurts — the side, when I twist it weirdly, but mainly the arch and top of my foot when I’m walking. I don’t know what I did but I’m starting to get bummed out and thinking I might need to see a doctor (although I would like to avoid that as much as possible). So, I’m wearing one of B’s ankle braces today from his ankle pre/post surgery, and it hurts a lot in general right now as a result. Grr!