Thursday, June 26, 2008

"You've Come Along Way, Baby"

WOW! This photo represents a lot. (No, I'm not going to blog about how much my seriously outdated kitchen needs to be remodeled ... and just in case anyone out there feels the uncontrollable urge to remind me, please be confident that as you speak, I am hanging my head and repeating, "yeah, I know, I know ...").
This entry will actually be about "letting go". Letting go of stress. Letting go of fear. Letting go of ... CONTROL. With just one look at this photo by my older children, they will be able to tell you exactly what I'm talking about.

I worked outside the home for 17 years. Not just one full-time job mind you - there were times when I worked two full-time jobs OR a full-time job and a part-time job. Why, I've even been known to work two full-time jobs along with a part-time job. Basically, I worked all the time - anywhere from 60-105 hours per week outside the home. Factor in commute time and I was only home long enough check on my sleeping children, catch less than 5 hours sleep for myself, then get the children off to school the next morning. The weekends? I usually worked things out so I could be home Saturday and Sunday mornings - this afforded me time to clean, do some laundry, grocery shop and cook a week's worth of meals before racing off to one of my jobs. Consequently, I had to run a "tight ship". Otherwise, there was the risk that absolute chaos would break out and the end result would be a huge mess that I did not have the time, and especially not the energy, to deal with.

Six years ago a miracle happened and I was able to stop being a part-time everything and begin working on becoming a full-time wife and mother. Five years ago, we decided to begin homeschooling JP, and as they started growing up, we decided to also home school OG and EJ. Now, don't be silly by thinking all this has been an easy transition. When a woman works away from home like a insane maniac out of necessity for 17 years - you know the cliche, "old habits die hard".

Six years ago I would have never dreamed I'd be able to let go ( ... don't have time to even think about a mess) and allow my 9 & 6 year old children to cook breakfast - all by themselves. Yep! without help from mom. As you can see from the photo, they were successful in creating a pretty good mess. But what you can't see from the photo is the self confidence they've gained by successfully completing this task completely on their own, without help from mom. You didn't see the pride in their faces when they asked me, "How do you like your egg sandwich?" "Did we make it the way you like it, mommy?" "Mmm, we sure are good cooks!"

AB and I recently had an opportunity to talk. I'd mentioned the contrast between my relationship with him and my relationship with the younger children. He questioningly implied that maybe I was disappointed in him. I had to explain that I am not disappointed in him. I am disappointed that I missed getting to know him as a child and that he missed getting to know me during his childhood. I am disappointed that he didn't get to make a mess in the kitchen. I am disappointed that I never heard him say, "Mmm, I sure am a good cook!" I am disappointed that I didn't get to spend all the crazy and messy days of childhood with him.

We can't go back and change the circumstances that caused me to have to work like an insane maniac. We don't get a do over. But, we do get today ... I have to go check in on OG & EJ - they are now "cleaning" the kitchen.


  1. TB ~ I am so glad that you are now at home full time. I can relate to working outside the home at a frantic pace. I too was in the same shoes. but being blessed to be a full time wife is so incredible.

    I have had nay sayers that feel the need to inform me of their opinions regarding my going back to work. (Not that their opinions were asked for.) Although they do not live in our home or pay our bills ~ they deem it necessary to let me know how wrong I am to not work when after all I am able and I have no children to look after. Geesh....I am so glad that they consulted my husband and I on this before telling us what I "need" to do.

    I will admit, there have been a few times when I thought it might be easier to go back into the workplace, but my hubby says no! He says it is his gift to me to be the supporter of our home and he does it willingly, he does it lovingly and he does it freely because he wants to.

    So I have had to learn to receive his gift freely. It is my job to keep our home and be a help meet to him as GOD designed me to.

  2. No one on this earth is happier than I am to now be a full-time homemaker. Even on the days when the children are fussy and not getting along with anyone, I am thankful. There is nothing anyone could ever say to make me think or feel like I am not exactly where God wants me to be. I've walked both sides of the street and I know without a shadow of a doubt, home is where God desires a woman to be.


Thank you for taking time to read my blog and leave a comment. I try my best to respond to each one. God Bless You, Mrs.B