Hey, you. Yeah, you – the lady who I probably silently judged after you told me you weren’t working outside the home at the moment. I need to tell you something – I’m really sorry. I judged you and I get it now. Consider this an apology and a cry for help to all the housewives in America.
I’ve worked since I was 17. In college I worked 20 hours a week, on top of school. After college, I got a job full time, which frequently lead to overtime hours. I don’t mind working, but my family life has always come first. In my last job, I got a lot of satisfaction from the work. I was proud of my work and I was even more proud to be a source of financial stability while my husband finished his doctorate.
But times change things, don’t they? In September we got the call that we’d be moving to Albuquerque. All of a sudden, I was quitting my job and moving 800 miles away right before the holidays. It’s been a whirlwind couple of months: we were practically homeless and crashed with friends for a few weeks, we spent a few weeks with family, and then… we bought a house and I became a temporary housewife.
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Before I quit my job, I’m not going to lie, I kind of daydreamed about some “time off”. I imagined that I’d be blogging 5 days a week (ha!!), I’d keep our house spick and span, and then after the holidays I’d figure out what I’m going to do with my life and get back to work.
I never understood why women who stayed at home said they were busy. I always sort of thought it was sad and that the talents of these women were wasted by them staying home. I think I was majorly wrong. I had a conversation with my dad a few weeks ago while I was running around like a chicken with her head cut off and it really dawned on me. I get it.
Housewives aren’t just women who don’t want to work and who get to lay around all day. Housewives do all the $#!* work that otherwise gets split between themselves and their husbands on the weekends. Housewives barter and they scope out the best deals. Housewives make those hard telephone calls – like to AppleCare or the cable company – where they sit on hold for 45 minutes waiting for something to answer a 30 second question. Housewives roam the aisles of home improvement stores, desperately searching for that one missing piece even. Housewives bring warmth to the home. Housewives have value.
What I’ve Learned as “Just” a Housewife
I’m only a few weeks into this lifestyle and I’m here to say – I’m not on my ass eating bonbons and watching daytime television all day.
I never realized how many errands there were to run and how long it takes to run them. I never realized how every part of my home needs me. There’s a lot that goes into running a home, and to top it off I do also try to tend to my husband’s needs and the dogs hardly ever leave me alone for long.
There’s always something that I can be working on. As soon as I make a full rotation: tidying up, doing laundry, cleaning floors, tending to the dogs, running to the grocery store, meal planning… it’s time to start over again.
I’ll be the first to tell you that this is a serious blessing – to be able to stay at home comfortably. That’s not lost on me. I know this is a pretty sweet gig I have right now. I also know that it doesn’t come without some sacrifice.
So, I’m sorry for silently judging you, stay-at-home wife. I get it now and it’s a choice that only you and your husband can make. I know you have value. I know you’re busy. I’m not saying that this is going to be a permanent change for me – I look forward to finding work outside the home again – but if you don’t, that’s cool. You do you, girlfriend. Home is a happier place with you around.