Those real housewives shows are a TRIP! I can’t even watch them. If that is what a housewife is, I sure don’t want to be one. Most of the time the term, “desperate housewives” comes up when talking about women who stay home. I don’t know that I even actually ever considered myself a “housewife”. It sounds so old school. But, here is the actual definition of housewife: a married woman whose main occupation is caring for her family, managing household affairs, and doing housework.
According to that definition, all married women are housewives whether they work outside the home or not!! However, I still don’t like the term housewife for some reason. Maybe because then there could be a work wife. Ha! Sorry, not in this house. My husband has ONE wife, I hate that whole “work wife” thing. I think it opens the door to some dangerous stuff; but that is for another blog post.
Back to being a housewifey… I also have never thought of it as an “occupation”, which means job or profession. Being at home is not the same as going to a workplace. I can break whenever I want, I can leave whenever I want, I have a freedom the workplace doesn’t offer. So, even though it is a lot of work, I have always thought of it as more of a role in life than profession.
I have actually worked most of my life. The only time I didn’t is from the time I got pregnant with Ethan until he started Kindergarten. I wanted to be the one to take care of my son, it was one of my only real desires in life. When he went to school I went back to work, with perimeters. I didn’t want him to ride the bus (I had really bad experiences as a kid, total personal issue; busses are fine) I wanted to be the one who took him and picked him up from school. So, I was limited in my career and gave up my previous career path. Why did I even go back to work?? I felt like a “housewife” wasn’t enough. I was trying to do it all and it led me down a crazy path. You can read more about that in a previous blog post, “Journey to Simplicity”.
Fast forward to current day. I stepped away from a very LARGE role at church recently. Why? Easy, my husband is the Senior Pastor and as his ministry got larger,as that happened my ministry to him and our family had to get larger. Truthfully, I have always felt like this was my truest calling anyway.
I faced some struggles I wasn’t prepared for. People that didn’t know me well assumed I didn’t understand leadership, business, politics, ministry, etc. They had no idea of my background and easily wrote me off as being uneducated or unimportant. Although I am confident in who I am and what God called me to do, I could easily see how this attitude makes stay at home moms and wives feel that they are not valued in society.
Others that knew my past wanted to know why I would “sacrifice” my dreams to support my husband. Didn’t I have gifts that I still wanted to use? Well, I had always dreamed of being a wife and so considering all of things I have gotten to do in my life, it has all been more than I ever dreamed of.
So, if you are a woman that works from home or is stay at home mom, here are some tips that help me keep living a satisfied life!
1- My home is the center of my life, but not my entire life. I still have a few responsibilities at church and go into the office a few hours a week. I write, blog, paint, play bass and lead Sisterhood. Make sure you do something outside the home. Whether it is joining a small group with other stay at home moms for support or starting your own business endeavor, create something in your life that gets you out!
2-I know God! I talk to Him, I study Him and I worship Him.. daily! No one else can fill the deep ache in you to be known like God can. The days I don’t do this I start reaching out for other things to satisfy only what He can. It always leaves me frustrated.
3- I know many people will not agree with the way we live our lives. You just have to accept that right now. Many people will think you are old fashioned. They may even wrongly assume that you are uneducated or just not capable of anything else. Don’t let it get to you!!! It takes a very strong and capable woman to manage a household and support her family.
4- I know my worth!!! There is no higher calling than raising a family. During Ethan’s teenage years I wanted to lean in, not run away. I believe he needs stability at home now more than ever and I am determined to give him that. It is an honorable and worthy decision to be there for your kids. There are days I don’t feel valuable, accepted or worthy: all people struggle with that. I have to remember that I am only worthy of the calling God has given me because of what God has done for me. Not because I deserve it or can do anything to deserve it.
5- I quit feeling guilty about loving my life. Every time I had a free minute, I use to feel guilty. I also felt guilty about how much I loved managing our home, cooking and taking care of our family. I mean getting to do what you love is just crazy, right?? I have just now learned to really embrace life and that it is ok to enjoy it – guilt free!
6- I am there. I get to be there for others. I am available. Don’t miss opportunities God gives you to serve others. Most people have to take off of work to help others, you don’t. Embrace that.
7 – This way is not the only right way! If this is what God has called you to, amazing. But, don’t think too highly of yourself. Just because other women work does not make you better than them or vice versa. Sometimes, our insecurities will lock us down into thinking we are “better” or our way is “better”. Women are the solution, not the problem and don’t go starting problems by tearing down the choices of other women. I wrote about this today because of my own experiences and wanting to encourage women who feel left out by society.
8- Appreciate your husband. If you have a man that sees the advantages to his woman running the home, you are blessed. Don’t take that for granted.
Don’t be a desperate housewife, be a satisfied one. It is possible to be a woman who is considered a real housewife and be satisfied in that. If you are like me and hate the term, “housewife” … then just be a satisfied woman doing whatever it is that God called you to do.