It is my understanding that most couples who get married go back to normal life after their honeymoon; either moving in together or going back to their previously shared abode.
It has been nothing like that for the Pilot and I. Since we got engaged in late May, we have been in Canberra, remote NT, back in Canberra for two weeks, got married!, France, Melbourne, Wangaratta, and now we are back in Canberra. In a couple of weeks we are leaving again to drive up to Cairns, visiting people on the way. After a month in Cairns we’ll go across to Karumba, where we will live in a caravan for three months while the Pilot is on a flying contract. And then after that, who knows. Hopefully the Pilot can find work in Cairns, and then I will as well. Otherwise we will just go to wherever he can get work.
So this is what has happened to me, a self-proclaimed feminist: I’m following my husband across the country for work. I get so annoyed when people follow their man around. And now I’m doing it.
It has not been an easy decision for either of us. Sometimes I feel like people will think I’m pathetic for doing it. Probably because of my own judgemental attitude towards people who follow their man around. That’s how judgementalism works: It’s a curse that rebounds onto you.
It doesn’t make any sense to me when people do something that on the surface appears anti-feminist, such as changing their surname upon marriage, but then argue that it is feminist, and makes sense because of their particular circumstances that have nothing to do with broader cultural forces at all. It makes more sense to me to admit that it’s not feminist than to wrangle feminism into a box that distorts it. The fact is, we are all influenced by broader cultural forces.
The decision works well for me, because I am going to take the opportunity of living in Karumba to finish writing two books that have been stagnated for years, while I was doing busy studying. I’ll effectively be a ‘kept woman’ because the Pilot will be bringing in the bacon. But if it means I’m one step closer to getting those books published, I’m happy with that.
So watch this space. I will have let myself down if I spend all my time being a ‘caravan wife’ instead of writing. But my feminist husband won’t let that happen!