Making it happen…

29 Jun

Anybody else out there tired?  Stressed?  At the end of their rope?  These days this seems like a perpetual state of being.  The discouraging part about it is that I seem to be the only one in this predicament within my house.  Which if you consider that I am one of six people sleeping here each night, is kind of surprising I think.  Especially when we further consider that everything that I struggle with seems to be something for the community good (our household community this is.)

I want to know when they wrote the job descriptions or edited them to put this responsibility on the mom.  Traditional images show the dad perspiring in the fields, struggling with his “nose to the grindstone”, taking it on the chin from the boss to provide for his family.  Meanwhile, the counter image of the mom is her floating through her home with a colorful feather duster, the aroma of cookies filling the air – prepared in a completely flour-free kitchen, tidy children smiling nearby – and there is never just one and everything is wonderful as the smile on her face so clearly expresses – and of course there will be no sweating for Mrs. Stepford.  Of course the comparison leads us to believe that moms life is filled with fulfillment, joy, success while dad is subjected to extensive physical labor suffering under inhuman conditions.  I don’t know about you, but this does not jive with my reality.

I am going to give a big thumbs up to most dads out there – truly most of them work their tootie off to make things happen for their family.  But sometimes feels like if they check their 50 hour work week box, they have fulfilled their requirements.  While it is on mom to play Ms. Wonderful above and in the meantime manage any shortfalls in time, money or needs of any kind that dad just isn’t able to provide.  It is very hard to feel graceful and beautiful in this situation – shoot it is hard to find time to brush your hair in this situation.

I think that alot of times we undervalue the role of the mom, and I’m sorry but I think this is particularly true for the stay at home mom.  Dads have their stresses and working moms do have a lot to juggle.  But stay at home moms make their children’s world happen for them, or have to suffer with them when it doesn’t.  Everyone else goes to the office and lives in an alternate reality for 8 or more hours a day – with a paid lunch break.

I know today I’m griping but I thought someone should…I’m pretty sure I’m not alone…I’m pretty sure we all feel pretty alone sometimes though…

Well that’s my fifteen minutes…Catch you later.


6 Responses to “Making it happen…”

  1. Terri June 29, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

    Many times I have to suffer the comments of “Well, you get to stay at home all day and eat bon-bons. What are YOU tired for?!” I don’t have bon-bons, (might help my mental outlook if I did), and I’m tired because I have 4 children whom I homeschool year round and a business that I run part time to try to keep food in our mouths. I work 7 days a week at all hours and make those “Mrs. Wonderful” meals. Quite frankly my dear, I’d love to work the 8 hour, paid lunchbreak day. But my kids are more important than what I want.

  2. Trish June 29, 2010 at 7:37 pm #

    Okay, I understand, having been a stay at home mom for a number of years. I completely agree about the misconception regarding level of effort required, or perceived level of effort. It’s tough and generally thankless.
    Working moms think their children are pretty important too. The implication that they aren’t is very wrong. Frequently working away from home is the only option available to a mother. That doesn’t make her a less caring mother.
    I was also a working mom. Agreed, you have 8 hours away from home (somewhat) but you aren’t ever “away” from home. Also, when you get home, you usually have the same things to do whether you work or not…meals, cleaning, errands, kids’ activities, etc.
    Neither walk is easy or well enough appreciated.

    • joycemzrodgers June 29, 2010 at 7:45 pm #

      Definately fair – I’m afraid my rant is primarily a case of “the grass is always greener”. Not to mention a longing for a lunch break. I definately agree that there is no easy row to hoe as a parent (mom or dad) – I think it was a perky mom picture that set me off this morning. Nothing like looking at well coifed (did I spell that right?) hair and look in the mirror to see Mrs. Frizzle to set a poor tone for the day 🙂

      • Barbara June 29, 2010 at 9:51 pm #

        Okay – I didn’t take this as a comparison to working moms versus stay-at-home moms at all … and if “Trish” is who I am thinking “Trish” is – then she is exactly what the blog is about 🙂 I don’t ever remember Daddy worrying about money – honestly! My best memory is Father working, being anxious about work, sleeping because he was so tired from work, or spoiling us rotten and taking us somewhere awesome. From what I heard, the male counterparts get to play the role of the “hunter and gatherer”. That job description clearly shows that their role is outside the family – which kinda sucks when the family is in a hard time. I get what you are saying and enjoyed the mild rant 🙂 As a mother lucky enough to live in both worlds throughout a year, I can tell you that it is at least for me soooo much easier to go to work then it is to stay home and watch these guys every day. And it has nothing to do with my loving or prioritizing my kids, it is completely about the kind of mother I want to be. I am a 100% in, balls to the walls mother – my kids get my attention and I am on the ground playing with them. Seriously, try being that kind of mom full-time … you just can’t. So I feel less guilty as a mother if I work – because I know that I can be a more loving and awesome mom when I am with them. But … that said, I have seen women, like you, who make it work and are able to maintain themselves in both cases. I pass no judgements on mothers – their job is the same, working or staying-at-home. Now if only we a potion to give our male counterparts which would allow them to handle two sick children, whining and sad, maintaining a food plan for the family, working a full time job, running a small business (okay its not a business, but family budgets are a lot of numbers!) balance sheet, a monthly friend visiting and throwing your hormones psycho, a migraine and a spouse who clocks out as soon as they arrive at home … well, lets just suggest that the crime rate would go up 🙂 xo B

  3. Jen July 7, 2010 at 5:55 pm #

    Women, especially mothers, are the heroes in this life, the way life as we know it is set up now, in these times. I am of the mind that we women were not designed to do our jobs as mothers in a vacuum– living isolated inside walls, spending 24/7 or maybe 16/7 with our offspring, and not in community with anyone. Anymore, we don’t really KNOW our neighbors, we don’t hang out with a tribe, and we don’t commune with other women every day as we go about our jobs. I believe we were designed to be far more in community than we are in this society. You know– gathering around the fire pit in the morning to make our morning coffee, and feed all the children together before we set about our chores for the day. Talking over coffee for a little while, and then some mamas setting off to get the berries and nuts, while others stay back at the home front to keep the fire burning and very loosely supervise the children playing over yonder, and tend to things like tanning the recent hides the men have brought in, or sewing this winter’s moccasins, or nursing the nursling that is slung to your back. My point is, of course, not that I wish for the days of nut and berry-gathering, necessarily, but that we would in most cases be far more full of serenity and contentment if we all spent a little more time working cooperatively, side-by-side, and had built in breaks from our kids by virtue of what our particular task was for the day– more balance, happening naturally. The men would be busy doing man things, and women could join them in those pursuits if that’s where their passion lay, and conversely, if a man or many men preferred the tasks that typically fell to the nurturing women, he could spend his time contributing in that way. We get lonely and worn out the way things are set up right now. There would be ample opportunity to spend time alone in my vision of how I believe things were meant to be, but it wouldn’t be a day-in, day-out thing, ever. Companionship would be built into everything, and those who needed re-fueling thru being alone could also get those needs met in doing a task that called for aloneness.

    We are all out of whack, in my opinion; far from how I believe our creator intended for things to be for His creation. We are adaptable, but only to a point. Mental and emotional health suffers, and we are a culture rife with problems related to those maladies. The Amish are closer to how He intended things to be… living in community, with multi-generations on one farm place (not necessarily always together), with children working and playing outdoors alongside adults who aren’t necessarily their parents, and women not feeling isolated because they are working alongside their aunties or sisters or friends. Menial chores don’t feel menial when good conversation and laughter peppers the day. Plowing a field, while hard work, feels less chore-ly when you’re teaching the next generation the ins-and-outs of the task, and helping a boy to feel like a man when he masters the task. Not saying I’m craving no electricity, and I would literally die from anaphalactic shock if I had to be around horses, but you get my point…

    • joycemzrodgers July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm #

      Thanks for the insights Jenny – I think if we begin to better understand our purpose and answer our “callings” it will lead to a more natural alignment both within our families and society. Perhaps, if I start at my feet I can begin to nudge things in a direction that would begin to resolve my own frustrations.

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