“Will you be willing to give up your practice for family?” I remember Eric asking me. I’m not sure if it was during the time he was courting me (hmmm.. was that a test?), or after committing to a “boyfriend-girlfriend” relationship. I said “yes” without hesitation, with a condition of course, “if you can fully support our family” (ok I think he was already my “boyfriend” then.)
After 7 years of specialty and subspecialty training, I did not end up as a “full-time” homemaker (It’s not too late Ninang!… “hmmmm”) Maternity leaves (1 month mostly in the house) have convinced me how difficult and stressful that work is. Yes being with the kids is enjoyable, and serving them gives a different kind of satisfaction. But then I see details in the home I want to change, arrange, clean, and put in order. I get to focus on correcting my kids mistakes and wrongdoings; and noting and instructing about (what I consider) wise and unwise use of time. If I were either my household help or my kid, I wouldn’t want me to be there. “No mommy!!!” That was my children’s recent reaction when I said I would probably need to be a full time Mom if we will lose our household helps (our helpers were fighting each other that time).
Being a full time homemaker is not a work for every wife or mom. Like any work or profession, it takes skill, hardwork, character, and immense patience, love, perseverance, and understanding. As a teacher, at least (most of) my students listen attentively and they look at me like I’m making sense. At home, especially now with teenage daughters, lectures are not that welcome. I’m tempted to threaten, “pay attention, we have a quiz later.”
Talking at home (at least half the time), feels like being on TV. I think, at different times, household members would want to put me on “mute”. And I had to explain why I’m talking, and then end up talking really a lot. I just had to fill the silence (I don’t know why?). That’s what being in the home too long does to me (and that can happen even in stays of less than 12 hours). Unless I’m sleeping, doing work on the desk, or watching TV with the kids (not more than 2 hours of screen time of course). Better not to stay home too long (why not clean the house, do the laundry, cook, wash the dishes Ninang? “Oh.. yes, that will be good! More work, less talk.” Unless I become too tired or bitter and take it out on household members. That will be more talk (God forbid!).
So who said women should be at home? Only if husbands can support the family and provide household helps (ok I added the second one). Certainly not the wife in Proverbs 31. I have never seen anyone as hardworking in and out of the home as the “Wife of Noble character.” I know family should be a priority; but as long as family will be prioritized, women can work and earn for the family. The Proverbs 31 woman illustrates the great potentials of wives and mothers. And not just at home.. and not just in work. And without having emotional breakdown (so help us God!).
In Proverbs 31:10-31,
“A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.”
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.”
“She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.” (Importer!)
“She gets up while it is still dark;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her servant girls.” (Provider and Cook!)
“She considers a field and buys it;” (Investor!)
“..out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.” (Viticulturist!)
“She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.” (Laborer!)
“She sees that her trading is profitable,” (Businesswoman!)
“..and her lamp does not go out at night.” (Night Tour Guide!)
“In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.” (Spindler?)
“She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.” (Philanthropist!)
“When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.” (Warmer?)
“She makes coverings for her bed;
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.” (Fashionista!)
“Her husband is respected at the city gate,
where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.”
“She makes linen garments and sells them,” (seamstress and saleslady!)
“..and supplies the merchants with sashes.” (Retailer!)
“She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.”
“She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.” (TEACHER!!)
“She watches over the affairs of her household” (Supervisor!)
“..and does not eat the bread of idleness.”
“Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her the reward she has earned,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.”
No dancing? 😬
– Ninang wifey thoughts
Disparate Housewives – women have different strengths and weaknesses, different passions and disposition. There’s no comparison between them. Each one must decide how she wants to be a homemaker and career woman. ☺️
(Thanks to my husband for the title and explanation. 😁 Thanks for letting me choose the path I believe God wants me to take. I love you. 😊 )