Since I was much younger I've had a little movie in my mind of my perfect future. It looks like this: I am in the kitchen, a large kitchen, with a big farmhouse table. There are children drawing at the table and a baby in a highchair. I have an apron on and I am smiling. As you walk past the oven, it smells of baking, of pie for dinner. If you walk to the open kitchen doors, the evening sunlight from the garden is warm and like honey as it softens the room. Around the door, honeysuckle or mock orange is growing, heady-scented in the evening warmth. There are china jugs on the table with haphazard garden flowers. My apron has flour dust on it. There is a lot of smiling. And my husband comes home, kisses the children, the baby and me. And I am feeling, 'here I am', living in what I once dreamt of, emotionally satiated and complete.
I used to think I was wrong for dreaming of this. That I was betraying feminism, or I had left my intellectual potential unfulfilled. Now I don't think that at all. Now I think, if that dream showed me who I was and what I wanted, then what is more feminist than to give myself the opportunities to make it real? And why can't I have an enquiring, challenged mind within that life? Here I am trying to live it and to write about it too, and my mind is flying higher and more free than it has in years.