It is Not Your Job

when your little girl
asks you if she’s pretty
your heart will drop like a wineglass
on the hardwood floor
part of you will want to say
of course you are, don’t ever question it
and the other part
the part that is clawing at
will want to grab her by her shoulders
look straight into the wells of
her eyes until they echo back to you
and say
you do not have to be if you don’t want to
it is not your job
both will feel right
one will feel better
she will only understand the first
when she wants to cut her hair off
or wear her brother’s clothes
you will feel the words in your
mouth like marbles
you do not have to be pretty if you don’t want to
it is not your job

—”It is Not Your Job” by Caitlyn Siehl

12 thoughts on “It is Not Your Job

    1. Thank you sir!

      (Forgot to close off comments on this one, but the more I think about it, the more I’m wondering if I shouldn’t just open them all up anyway. I didn’t want to put pressure on anyone to feel like they had to comment or me & Jennie to feel like we had to respond, since it’s a post-a-day project, but I also don’t want to stifle or silence voices that have a right to be heard. I’ll talk to Jennie to weigh the pros and cons.

      If anyone else happens to read this, feel free to weigh in–would you prefer a comment/like/pressure-free blog, or would you prefer an open setting?)


      1. I was surprised to find a comment box in this one and took advantage of it. Either way works for me. The poems and quotes you both choose usually speak volumes to me in one way or another.


  1. There have been sooo many I wanted to comment on, but I absolutely love the freedom of not being able to. For YOU as much as for me. I like reading the words for what they are and not “bugging” you with a comment. If I see something I absolutely need to communicate…you have lots of available channels 🙂


    1. Thanks Michelle for your thoughts. I’m thinking if we just adjust expectations, that hey, if you don’t comment, that’s ok, and if we don’t always reply– unless asked a question–that’s okay too. If you’re following, that means you like us, and given our other communication outlets, you know we appreciate and like y’all too. I think that would keep the pressure off. When we started this, we didn’t want to overwhelm anyone, so we’ve been taking little baby steps into the water. But hey, the water feels pretty good… 😉 I do want the format to be reader friendly, so we’ll see what others say. I may add it as a question into the next post so that email readers can chime in if they’d like.


  2. Thank you for sharing this poem here. It’s the perfect description of so much I didn’t know how to say…
    I personally like the option to comment, but if closing them is less pressure/stress/time-consuming, by all means, close them 😃


    1. Thank you Heather, I call this one an ooph-poem. When I read it, I felt that little “ooph” in my stomach. Caitlyn, the poet, is incredibly gifted — I’m sure we’ll see more of her work here.

      I thought this poem held hands very well with two posts I saw this week on WordPress:
      Madame Weebles:
      Sara Draws:

      And thank you for your thoughts on commenting. I don’t think it’s stressful for me or Jennie, but as life intervenes sometimes, we may not respond personally or quickly to every comment. Just as I would strongly remind readers, you don’t have to read, comment on, or like every single post. We’ll see what others think this week, and we’ll certainly take everyone’s feelings into consideration. Thank you again! Christy ((and on that note, sorry I haven’t been by in a while. Personal life has thrown me some lemons lately, but I’m trying to catch back up with everyone, so I’ll see you real soon.))


  3. I hear ya. I don’t always have time to comment (or reply to comments on my blog), and I feel bad about that. I totally understand. And I think MamaMick above makes a valid point about how easy it is to reach you if we absolutely MUST comment.

    On, the other hand, I SO love what I’m reading that I wish we could at least “like” the post. I view that Like button as a little high five . At any rate, you know that I am always here reading your words. Always.

    That said, let me now take the opportunity while comments are open, to say how much today’s poem resonated with me. GOD. I wish Caitlyn had been around to write this poem when I was an adolescent. She’s so young to be so wise. When I was her age, I was SO not!. Wise. About that.


    1. I have a love/hate with the LIKE button. Even with the likes disabled, readers or spammers can still “like” via the WP Reader, so the only ones who get “penalized” are those who read via email or RSS readers. I just get creeped out when the SPAM likes creep in like the Korean Michael Kors re-salers or UGG boot sites, LOL. But, those are personal little quirks. I know I love being able to “like” others’ posts, like little waves hello, so I certainly see where you’re coming from.

      And girl, I’m so behind on comments. I like to respond in kind and if someone leaves a thoughtful comment, they deserve a thoughtful response, but my mind has been so wacky, I’ve not been capable of thoughtful this week, haha. But I’m catching up. So I know those sides too. I guess a pressure free, open door policy thing sounds pretty good — leave a penny, take a penny thing — so I’m leaning a certain way, but I’m interested to hear what others may say this week.

      Caitlyn… her work kicks me in the gut, in a good way. I have another saved for later too. xooxo


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