You spent this weekend with a bunch of women and the weekend before that with a bunch of men. Funny, isn't it?
Where did you feel like you fit in?
Neither group, really. Scrapbooking with the women seemed frivilous, and fixing dunebuggies with the men was over my head.
What are you, assigning them levels now?
Well sort of. I mean, spending time with women can be dissapointing. Men get together and make things that go fast, pull stuff, compute numbers, fly. Women get together and... scrapbook? Made greeting cards with rubber stamps? I'm dissapointed in my gender, seriously, you tell me who's furthering society.
I thought you were a feminist. You're supposed to believe that women can do great things.
I used to. I don't know what to think anymore. Some women are doing great things, I'm sure, but they're few and far between.
So being a scientist is the only way to be great?
Makes sense to me. Science is what divides humans from animals.
What about art? Women are just as powerful in the artistic communities today as their male counterparts and you know it.
That just seems... not as important as science.
You're just saying that because you're a scientist.
Maybe. But I also think that science doesn't feed us or shelter us.
Art doesn't pollute our oceans or start wars.
Fine then, both things are important. Then why are men so involved in both worlds, but women only one? Where are the women who can fix cars, and build computers, and excel at math?
There are quite a few. Why do you care, anyway? Why can't you just be you and stop overthinking this? Why can't you just be an engineer and leave it at that?
Because I'm a woman engineer. And some days, it seems like a contradiction in terms. I can't tell if I'm trying to be an engineer, or trying to be a man. And there's nobody around who understands. I look at the world and think, "if women were meant to be engineers, why aren't there more of them? why aren't our brains more wired for this technical stuff? why can't I fix cars, too?" I don't feel good enough sometimes to be in this world, I feel like I'm struggling.
Your job has nothing to do with cars. And you're doing just fine at it, everyone says so.
I just brought up cars as an example of being technical. I feel like something isn't clicked in me like it is in these guys. I'm not technical, I'm a wannabe.
And you think everyone else feels so incredibly secure about it?
So if you were a man, you'd have all the answers, huh?
That's what it feels like some days. I don't know where women are supposed to go in this world.
God has a plan for you. Can't you trust in God?
Not when it comes to the woman thing.
When I was 13, I was a devout Christian. I decided to read the Bible. I knew what went on in Genesis, that didn't bother me. But as the old testiment progressed it just got worse and worse. Women were evil. Women weren't worth anything unless they could bear sons. Women didn't lead their people or find favor in the eyes of God unless they did things to make men's lives better. I decided that God had cheated my entire gender, He didn't love us as much as men, He didn't care. I hated it. I couldn't read the Bible anymore, for the next two or three years I was just empty, I had no contact with God and hated that even more. I wanted life to be simple again. I wanted to be able to pray. I couldn't pray. I was too upset about what I was.
So you became a Christian, and a Feminist? Sounds like you came back and embraced everything that you had no grounds to turn to.
Sometimes, that's the only way to figure things out. In my heart, I know that Christianity is the truth, and Feminism is a good movement. There are flaws, and I act a lot more confident in my convictions than I am in both cases.
And both ideas give me Hope. Jesus changed a lot of attitudes about women, for his time he was a feminist. He reached out to women. That means a lot to me, just that one aspect of God coming and saying that we're okay. It makes me think that maybe there is something figured out for me.
Do you love engineering?
Yes. Always. There's no doubt in my mind about that anymore.
Then don't think about all these insecurities. It's not scientific. It's not logical. It's not your job.
But I'll be back soon. I'm always back. I'm always pretending it's okay, when really I have all this to get off my chest.
Well maybe you'll find your answers someday.
Maybe I will.