Thank you to my beloved friend who has so lovingly shared her life with us as a Guest Writer! I hope you learn a thing or two from this glimpse into her life…as she teaches me so much, spoken & unspoken! I Love You and honored that you would share life with me.
“So what do you do all day?”
I had come to expect this question from nearly anyone who wasn’t a stay at home parent. But it still stung every time. I guess part of me understood the curiosity. I didn’t understand the job responsibilities until I actually signed up. Still, one brief encounter with “Curious George” and I found myself questioning whether being a stay at home mom actually made sense or whether it was really just a self-imagined, self-absorbed idea masquerading as purpose in my life.
I answered the question clumsily: “Oh, you know…she wakes up, I feed her…then she plays” – wait I’m supposed to be more involved – “Er, we play together. I try to teach her some flashcards…” – really, I park her in front of the television – “I put her down for a nap…she wakes up…I feed her again…” I trailed off, painfully aware of how awkward and insecure I sounded. I didn’t have a real schedule like most moms. And I don’t mean that in the sense of those free spirited moms that do away with rigid schedules and let their kids develop naturally. I just didn’t have a clue. I also struggled with leaving the house. That whole introverted extrovert? That’s me to a T. I loathed play dates because it meant I had to actually interact with other moms…and those moms clearly had it all together.
You’re reading this and you’re thinking I’m being way too hard on myself. I know I am. The truth is I’ve always struggled with purpose. I’ve always felt like whatever I was doing wasn’t significant enough. In a world dominated by our XY counterparts, little girls are being raised to be stronger, faster, smarter, and more independent. From the time we can walk and speak, thrusters are being fitted and strapped to our backs to aid us in bursting through the glass ceiling in our workplaces. My parents tried their best to fit me with my own pair of thrusters and, believe me, I thought I’d be using them on a glass ceiling of a hospital one day. I do like the medical field. I excelled during EMT training and I do get a sense of fulfillment when I administer aid to people. But I realized medicine was more like a hobby to me. So I didn’t fight the way one fights when one needs to get into medical school. And it was simply because when I closed my eyes at night, I didn’t dream of traumas and surgeries…
I dreamed instead of the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with – the strong, wise, caring, affectionate, supportive, lover of my very being – and the beautiful kids we would raise together in the instruction of the Lord. I dreamed of birthday parties and Christmas Eves with our clan of tiny humans nestled on a sofa under warm blankets, drinking hot chocolate. Sounds like a dream, right? That’s exactly what it was and still is. At first I kept this dream to myself, convincing myself that they were the hobby…they were the bonus to a rewarding and lucrative career as a doctor. For 28 years, I couldn’t convince myself that being a wife and mother was my God given purpose in life…
But what exactly is purpose?
I came across this quote from Madame Ernestine Schumann-Heink:
What is a home? A roof to keep out the rain, four walls to keep out the wind. Floors to keep out the cold. Yes, but home is more than that. It is the laugh of a baby, the song of a mother, the strength of a father. Warmth of living hearts, light from happy eyes, kindness, loyalty, comradeship. Home is first school and first church for young ones, where they learn what is right, what is good, and what is kind. Where they go for comfort when they are hurt or sick. Where joy is shared and sorrow eased. Where fathers and mothers are respected and loved. Where children are wanted. Where the simplest food is good enough for kings because it is earned. Where money is not as important as lovingkindness. Where even the tea kettle sings from happiness. That is home. God bless it.
If my heart could speak, it would recite this quote from the mountaintops. I realize that this is my dream and my calling. For others, it may very well be the high paying job AND the family – or not. I know women who have worked tirelessly for their dreams and are striving towards the career they have always wanted – and that makes them happy. Despite the differences in our dreams, we should all stand up and be counted as purpose driven. And we should encourage our children to do the same. If you can close your eyes at night and see it in your dreams, if it literally makes your heart glad, and energizes you to start your day, then like Madame Heink said: God bless it. You’ve found your purpose. I believe I’ve finally found mine. I’m not just a housewife. Not just a stay-at-home mom. I am a HOMEMAKER. With God’s help I am making a home.
The Naked Writer
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