This British drama, staged in North Yorkshire, follows the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the reign of King George V. There are, of course, delectable tragedies and entertaining conflicts that keep you unreasonably interested in this family’s affairs. The ladies of the house dress in spectacular gowns, and even the servants dress better than anyone in today’s workforce.
What I am reminded after every episode is this: I need a live-in servant. Okay, okay don’t be too harsh on me; what I mean to say is, for centuries upon centuries, wealthy families have had hired people within their household to assist with daily operations. These days, however, women are left to all the details themselves.
What is also great about Downton Abbey is how much a part of the family the servants are. Lord and Lady Crawley are very interested in the welfare of everyone in their house, including the footmen and maids. I am not in any way suggesting another form of slavery, I’m merely encouraging the idea of a person “serving” me in my home as opposed to say McDonald’s. (Not that I could afford a live-in maid anyways!)
I must also tell you, I think I would make a very great servant myself. Why with my attention to detail and love for setting the table and all. I am in no means belittling those in today’s society who serve others as a source of income. I myself am the low man on the totem pole at my company. The idea I am trying to express is that we women have so many tasks in our daily lives that there needs to be more than one of us in our homes to accomplish them all. And I don’t even have kids (well at least not the human kind)!
I told a friend at work last week, “Superwoman is overrated,” as we were discussing the busyness of our evenings. She told me yesterday that she had reminded herself several times over the past few days of what I said. She thanked me for it. That’s when I began to think that perhaps more women just need to be reminded. I of all people like for things to be done, and done right. But there are seasons when life gets so overwhelming that we think one more task might be the straw that broke the camel’s back.
I have another friend at work that is, as closest as I have seen, like Superwoman. She works full time, has two kids, cooks and cleans, does activities with her children, takes care of the dogs, does the grocery shopping and the laundry, ect. ect. (And her husband is super helpful, I might add!) But it’s still a lot to manage.
My encouragement is this: slow things down and make room for life. There are many demands placed on us every day, and sometimes the load seems so heavy. Superwoman may be an aspiration for you, but be real about the amount of responsibilities you carry. You did not gain superpowers from a blood transfusion from Superman, nor do you possess powers of super-strength and flight. You are who you are, and that is enough.