I choose to give up a nearly three-figure income in my mid-twenties, at great personal and professional inconvenience, to give my devilish, glorious children the gift of their own mommy’s hand on their owies and her own voice reading them real books, in person. The little monkeys like both very much. It satisfies their tiny souls. You can’t box me in, sir, because despite all that I’m still the family breadwinner—at home, during naps, and when my husband is home from graduate school. I fit in your government favorites category, but I don’t. How annoying to us both. It’s especially annoying to me to know that bureaucrats don’t like the way my husband and I prefer to arrange our life for our children’s comfort.
Not only that, they’re going to make me pay for it. First, economically: As the loser in a system of government preferences, I have to pay for goodies for other people that aren’t goodies for me. Second, socially: I have to hold my head high as a woman who sticks to her innate criteria for love and justice while the president of the free world takes to international television to bash me for having criteria that don’t match those of an egotistical, money-focused alpha male. How phallo-centric. And patriarchal.
All those people who want to hire me can find another capable employee. But nobody can replace my babies’ momma. And don’t you ever dare try. To pretend that it’s right to force this mom away from her children by increasing my taxes and compressing the job market to pay for other families who make different decisions is a total jerk move.