I grew up during a time when Dolly Parton was working 9-5, commercials blared “I bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan,” and Designing Women were praised for their independence. June Cleaver was now frowned upon. We won’t even talk about the music I grew up listening to. Main stream feminism really messed with my head. And I never even agreed with it. It was just that influential through media.
I know today most in the feminist movement aren’t hard core about this and that they believe in empowering women to choose their place whether that be in the home, in the office, or a combination of both. The problem is that in the 80s and 90s the message that came across was that homemakers were not living up to their full potential.
However, over the years I’ve realized that I am not a maid or an inferior human being because I have taken on the job of being a homemaker. (Tweetable) My family doesn’t expect me to be a maid. I was interpreting things all wrong. Instead of feeling like a hired hand who has to run around cleaning this and scrubbing that, this is a job I applied for and worked towards with fervor. Why did I now despise it? Simple, I was looking at it from the wrong perspective.
I applied to be a wife, mom, and home owner. What that means is I have an equal responsibility to maintain and manage it. I think I’ve let society tell me that my job is a disgrace; humiliating; degrading. That I should strive for more. I should get a day job and be somebody.
Funny. I know of a lot of women who have built successful businesses around the premise of cleaning homes. They are praised. Irony?
I have to laugh at that now. Being a wife is not a disgrace. Being a mom is not humiliating (at least not all the time). Being a homeowner is not degrading. I manage and maintain for the greater benefit of my family and our home in partnership with my husband. I’m like a co-founder and CEO. I run the show here. I can’t think of a better job.
With that said, don’t for one second think that I never hire out help. That is part of my job. I manage by delegating and if that means hiring a cleaning person on occasion then so be it. The point is that I don’t find cleaning my home a symbol of weakness or failure. If I buy a car I clean it and maintain it. That is how I keep the resale value and make sure it is enjoyable to me when I drive it. Why shouldn’t cleaning my home be even more important?
Let’s overcome the battlefield in our mind. The one that recalls every negative thing you’ve ever heard about homemaking. The one that believed it when her high school friends said they’d never be the one doing the cooking and cleaning then ten minutes later finds some sort of peace and gratification over a clean floor and a dust free environment.
We must come to a place where we are comfortable with who we have chosen to be and where we thrive in the day to day. (Tweetable) For me, that is somewhere in the middle. I do work full time from home. I am a mom to four boys from teen to toddler. I do about 3/4 of the housecleaning and most of the cooking. The rest of the cleaning is done by my husband, my boys, or hired help. I like it that way. And I am pretty content with myself.
What about you?
To read the other posts in this series: 31 Days to a Clean, Fresh Nest.
For more blogger’s participating in the “31 Days” series visit Nesting Place.