Monday, June 14, 2010

Expecting Perfection

So here I am reading along in Dispatches from a Not-So-Perfect Life, by Faulkner Fox and chuckling, especially at the part early on where she wants to devise a pie chart of her unhappiness as a mother with young children and I'm fine with her going to therapy to try to find some answers, interested in her feeling that the therapist seemed to be trying to catch her in some lie, in the therapist's assumption when she said she was a writer that she was delusional, in her assessment that she wanted what men had: the right to keep doing her own work when the husband and kids walk in the room.
I thought, "Here is a woman who who has faced some of the same challenges I have and can write in a witty way about what she thinks and and understands of these events and feelings," and then I get to the beginning of the next chapter. "I began to fantasize about being in a house with a man and a child when I was 23." (p. 15) What had been flat terrain between me and Faulkner Fox began to have ankle-high hurdles that it was not impossible for me to step over, but I was going to be more skeptical. By page 28 (page 28!) when she mentions the herb garden in the back yard where "we buried our sons' placentas" she had lost me. The hurdles were now neck high and I put down the book and considered whether to keep reading. I haven't yet.
Faulkner Fox. Who names a little baby girl Faulkner? You've got to be kidding me. And if it wasn't her parents, if she chose it for herself, it's even weirder.
It annoys me that the only books about such topics are regularly written by the people who have even fewer ideas than I do about how to get on with life in our new century, people whose fantasies don't rise above some Lifetime Channel fuzzy-focus poster, people who incorporate other cultures' traditions willy-nilly in some bid for multi-cultural inclusiveness, or just have no clue what's important, so try to do everything they're vaguely drawn to aesthetically. I'm expecting feng shui if I do pick up the book later.

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