Saturday, May 22, 2010

Woman's Work

When my daughter was three, we were driving along somewhere when she (obviously a victim of my penchant for fairy tales) said, “Mommy, you’re our servant.” I managed to avoid hitting a telephone pole and sputtered, “WHAT?”

“Yes, you cook and clean and take care of the house and us. That’s what servants do.”

Now, I consider myself a feminist. I think that women can do the same job as men and shouldn’t be held back or paid less just because they’re women. They should have the opportunity to have a meaningful profession outside of the home.

I work very part time (about 7 hours a week on a schedule of my choosing) so that I can do my real job: make a comfortable and peaceful home for my family. I take pleasure in planning and preparing nutritious meals, keeping things clean, organized, and in good repair. I find creative outlets in sewing, gardening, cooking, and so much more. There is intellectual challenge in budgeting, planning outings, education, entertainment, and other things too numerous to mention. It is truly emotionally satisfying to be the trusted confidante and sounding board for my husband, daughter, family, and friends – and to trust and confide in them in return.

Now that my daughter is 13, I think she has a greater appreciation for and understanding of my job (and knows better than to call me “the servant”). But I run into all kinds of people (even homemakers) who don’t have the appropriate value for the vital contributions of – I’m just going to put the word out there – housewives.

How does feminism – the valuing of women – turn into the de-valuing of the very important work that is traditionally a woman’s? Makes no sense.


  1. Yes. I have thought about this many times over the years since becoming a homemaker. And I just don't get it. I don't understand why, as a woman, I can have any job- achieve any dream I may have. As long as it is outside of the home.

    Btw- thanks for your advice on the chicken situation!

  2. I agree. I've been a full time wife & mum and have also juggled a full time (and demanding) job with still trying to be a full time wife & mum - due to family circumstances - but it can't be done. My family are much happier and life runs much more smoothly now I am working flexibly from home doing what I love and here where I am needed. I believe that people would be much happier if they accepted fewer material things but more time to enjoy life and children would have fewer 'issues' if they had parents around who had time to spend with them.

    By the way, thanks for following my blog. Hope to see you there again soon.

  3. Mandi and Pat, I could not agree more. It's a real privilege to be home. It makes for a better quality of life for the whole family.


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