Balancing Jane

I am a part-time PhD student studying the rhetorical construction of identity and difference, a full-time English instructor at an urban community college, a wife, and the mother of a toddler. My blog, Balancing Jane, serves as a space to analyze the intersections of these roles. As a result, I often analyze things like equally shared parenting, feminism and pop culture, education, the perceptions of women in the workforce, and the media portrayal of gender and racial identities.

A Copy of a Copy of a Copy: Postpartum Anxiety

We'll go to the zoo. It'll be fun. It's not too hot today, and it's the last week of summer vacation ....more

Starfish and Sequoias: Why Do You Vote?

I've been having a lot...more

Fat Shaming in Gilmore Girls: What Progress Have We Made?

I'm watching Gilmore Girls again. It's great background television to have on while I'm folding clothes and sweeping the floor and otherwise caught in a cycle of domestic chore-doing while on maternity leave.This is probably my fourth time through the series, and while I vaguely remember a few of the references from the time before this viewing, I'm definitely noticing the fat shaming that is peppered through the show with alarming frequency.I'm certainly not the first re-watcher to recoil at these painful barbs in a series I remember fondly and warmly. Courtney Mina takes the show to task for several fat shaming and more general body shaming moments in this post for Bust ....more

The Gamification of Everyday Life, Self Care, and Neoliberal Shortfallings: What Has Pokemon Go Done for You Lately?

I have a confession: I kind of suck at maternity leave. My son is eight weeks old now, and this is officially the longest I have gone since I was 15 years old without working. I still have a little over a month before I am back to teaching, and I'm staring down those days with something like dread mixed with something like willful determination ....more

The First Post-Baby Gym Visit

He's finally old enough to use the drop-in daycare at the Y. I should go to the gym today....more

Money on My Mind

Last week, my car broke down. I'd venture to guess that I have more experience than a lot of people in a car breaking down. As I have catalogued previously, I have driven more than my fair share of clunkers ....more

Flaunting, Feeding, and Feminism: The Politics of Breastfeeding in Public

I breastfed my daughter until she was fifteen months old, an act that I am proud to have accomplished because it was hard work--especially since I went back to work when she was seven weeks old and had to pump to give her a supply of milk for daycare. I spent a lot of time and energy (physical and emotional) into making sure that she was nourished.But I didn't spend much time breastfeeding her in public. Since I was already pumping for work, I tended to use expressed milk when we had planned public outings ....more

It's a Boy! (A Birth Story)

Disclaimer: When I wrote my daughter's birth story five years ago, I blogged anonymously and to a teeny tiny audience of people who had randomly found my blog through some links on other feminist mothering blogs (most of which are no longer even around the interwebs--moment of silence for the ghosts of bloggers past). These days, though, I share my blog under my real name and on my personal social media accounts, so I realize that there are people who will read this who will also see me in person as friends and colleagues. That reality of course factors into how I decide what to share in this space, but for the most part I've remained pretty open, honest, and accessible as my anonymity drained away ....more

I Broke Up With My Therapist Over Feminism (and Doing Dishes)

A few months ago, I decided that I could use some counseling for stress management. I was pregnant, teaching full time, dealing with some frustrating issues with extended family, and in the thick of my daughter’s new ADHD diagnosis and the navigation of what it meant for helping her get the resources she needed available to her in educational settings (an exhausting bureaucratic nightmare that left me feeling powerless). As I found myself spending most nights a jittery mess of nerves playing the worst-case scenario game in my head, I knew that my pregnancy (and, you know, life) would go smoother if I could find a way to get myself re-centered, but I also knew I could use a little help doing it....more

Advertising, Postmodernity, Greed, the Fourth Wall: Breaking Up with The Walking Dead

I am done with The Walking Dead. Like Scandal before it, it has come time for me to write a public break-up letter to a television series that has been able to count me among its many faithful viewers for years. My husband has no problem breaking up with shows ....more
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