I've been hearing a lot of buzz about a new item out there. A new and improved pressure cooker. I remember hearing about pressure cookers back when I was a kid. They were taken off the market because they were unsafe. They would get too hot and explode. These new models are supposed to be great though — and safe. People are cooking stews, rice, pasta and even making yogurt in them. There's a Facebook group just to go for ideas, support, and of course pictures of pressure cooked meals.
I am so curious about these pressure cookers. Would it make my life easier? Would it make delicious meals? Would it save me money to be able to make my own yogurt? Probably, I mean maybe. It would also put me out $100 or so, in addition to taking up more precious real estate in my kitchen. I am intrigued though, and my new research obsession with the pressure cooker has begun. Who wouldn't want something that could make your life just a tiny bit easier?
I am just thrown my the word "pressure" though. Especially since this decision to get one or not has already added just that to my plate. It feels these days that so many of us women are marketed to items that would make life easier. It's a great marketing tool, because life is not easy at all. In fact it does seem even harder now than when our parents were raising us. The competition is steep out there for jobs, education is crazy expensive and real estate is through the roof (pun intended). There was an article recently (also going around the world famous time sucker of a site Facebook) about how many women are experiencing a midlife crisis. The demands of a woman living in today's society ain't for the weak.
Gone are the days where women work in a field, either an career or a literal field, and find one skill to do well and stick to it. Instead, we are expected to climb, to get advanced degrees, to be super mom, to exceed expectations and still be able to cook a healthy dinner for your family. This is tapping people out physically, emotionally, and financially. I send so much time each day breathing, trying to be present, and to soak in the moment. I also spend so much time talking myself off the ledge of my own frustration. I am overwhelmed and I don't even have a full time job right now. When I stop my to do list, my errands, and emails, I can actually get a sense of contentment for my life. I can see that when I slow it down, I really do love my life. I love the ages of my kids right now. I love the things they say. I enjoy cooking and exercise. I enjoy really being with them, but I don't do it enough. Mostly because the pressure to appear that I am succeeding at more than just being a mom is laid on thick.
I don't have an answer on how to value what I have more, or how to help women collectively take inventory. I don't know how to share a communal feeling of "we are enough." I write down five things that I am grateful for every night, but sometimes I get to three and the next day I can't read four and five. I literally fall asleep trying to stay present. I want a new pressure cooker but feel a bit like I am being suckered into the idea of it, more than the pressure cooker itself. I want to go fall down a Facebook hole and get on that pressure cooker group, but I am pretty sure it won't help me feel anything but more pressure.