When I lost my job due to the economy, I was really sad. Teaching wasn’t just a job for me, it was who I was; my purpose, my life. I cried for a week solid. I kid you not. I went through mood swings and sadness and insomnia. (My poor husband.) What would I do now? The one thing I felt worst about was that I had lost my purpose. I have always felt that teaching was my calling. It was the one thing I was supposed to do with my life. And maybe that’s the case. But I have to tell you a secret…
I think I have found a new one. And I am in love.
I never thought I’d say this…and…it’s almost hard to do so. I…am falling in love…with…
…being a *gulp* housewife.
Whew. There, I said it. But seriously folks, I really kind of do like being at home. I did not come to this conclusion easily. I overlooked the many blessings “housewifing” would bring because I was in a negative space that would only allow me to dwell on what I’d lost. After a lot of prayer and study and gritting my teeth and being plain old grouchy (my husband is a saint…really), I finally just gave in. It helps that I’m still tutoring on the side, but it is such a blessing that I don’t have to work. I’ve struggled for years to relax and enjoy weekends and time off because I always had a to do list a mile long. I never had the time to go grocery shopping or vacuum the floors or do the laundry during the week. It was extremely frustrating and overwhelming for me to have all that stuff piled up around me all the time. I was not a fun person to live with (hubs = saint).
And I’ll admit something to you dear readers…I used to have a love hate relationship with the idea of staying at home. On the one hand, I wanted to feel productive and independent through working. I didn’t want to depend on anyone for anything. I thought people who stayed home were trapped. I always admired moms who got to stay home because my mom was mostly stay at home while I was growing up and I know how much I benefited from that as a kid, but I didn’t want to be bored and lonely (perception, not fact) and having to ask for money to do little things. (My husband is awesome and would never, ever treat me like the little woman…he treats me as an equal.) And that’s still kind of hard for me. I’ve had to learn to depend on my husband more which is like swallowing a lot of pride all at once, but I’m starting to see that maybe this was a lesson I needed to learn.
But I’m also learning that there are so many things I’m getting out of this.
I love the sense of pride I feel after I clean the house and can look around me at the calm, relaxing, clean space I’ve created.
I love that Sundays have now become a “family day” of sorts for us. We don’t make the bed, we don’t talk about work, we don’t have to run all over creation to buy groceries and household items. We don’t have kids yet, but I see this as something we can do when we do have kids. I’m learning to relax. (Yes, learning…I’ve never been good at sitting still – something I got from my mother.)
I love that I can greet my husband when he comes home from work.
I love that we’ve started eating dinner around the dining room table and talking about his job and my tutoring schedule and what we’ve done that day. We even make plans for the weekend ahead. I love that he trusts me enough and values my opinion enough that he talks to me about his job.
I love that my laundry hamper doesn’t reach critical mass anymore (mostly…).
I love that I’m learning to cook more things and improvise in the kitchen.
I love that I have time to organize and create a nice home for my husband and I.
I love that the many hobbies I’ve put aside the last 6 years are slowly creeping back into my life and I am enjoying myself while I’m doing them.
I love the challenge of couponing and figuring out ways to save us money. I figure if I’m not bringing in much, then it’s my job to figure out how to keep us from spending more than necessary. (There is serious math involved in being a housewife people!)
But…there’s one thing I don’t love. I don’t like the term housewife. It makes me sound stodgy and old. So…thanks to the suggestion of an old friend, I am now Chief Operating Officer of the Scrappy Housewife Household. (I would say CEO, but I honestly see my husband as CEO…call me old fashioned…it’s a choice, and I like it.)
I know that this is not the life for everyone. And I’m sure that some of you will scoff at me that I place my husband “above” me in the chain of command, but honestly, it works for us. We’re a little old fashioned but definitely not old. We like it, and I love it and that’s all that matters.