‘My dad is a retired engineer, and my mother doesn’t work, she is just a house wife’ said the candidate sitting in front me of while telling me about his family. This was not so long ago.
This statement had disturbed me for I guess, forever now. My mother is a Homemaker, and I know how much effort she has put in to bring three girls up; cooking, cleaning for us, and to entertain as well. Apart from looking after us ( which was the toughest job in the planet, we were a handful :P) she indulged in a variety of other things. She is the most talented women I have come across, and I say this because its true, and not just because she is my mother. She is an excellent cook, an avid reader, gifted painter, has amazing skills of stitching, knitting and crochet and a trained beautician. She used to conduct hobby classes for cooking, baking, and art & craft. Most of my primary school days are filled with memories of different cakes and cookies (slurp slurp!).
She has always been proud of the fact that she is a housewife. And handled everything with grace and elan. Maybe that is one reason for my different outlook on the whole thing. Today all of us are working and handling our homes too. All thanks to her, we are doing a pretty good job so far (I would say so). We also manage to delve into out hobbies, be it cooking, painting, writing or any other. She has taught me till my high school, I never took any tuition till then. I never took tuition. Period. I have always thought of her as not only the best mother, but now I know she is all that a homemaker can be, and then some. Now if someone says that a housewife does not work, my reaction would be..
Those who think that way are just ignorant or too full of themselves to notice the work a mere housewife puts in a her normal day.
Now, before I get carried away let me mention a couple of recent incidents.
A teenage daughter was reluctant to introduce her mother to her friend’s parents, as her mother is a stay-at-home-mother and her friend’s parents have full time jobs. Now this lady, not only works at home but also is a counselor. She wakes up early in the morning with her daughter to give her warm milk while she studies, then drives her to her tuition class. Brings her home, makes her breakfast, drops her to school, gets busy with her own work all the while entertaining plethora of phone calls and random guests. She also drives her daughter for another class in evening and brings her back too. All the while she maintains a fine home, makes arrangements for any and every thing her daughter might need, and takes care of her house guests too.
Tell me now how can you say she doesn’t work?
Another incident happened with a friend. She chose to stay home to take care of her daughter, while her husband worked. Now this sounds normal, right? Well, it did till someone’s comment made me think other wise. She can do anything she wants, but she ‘chose’ to stay home and look after her family. Which again is not a small job. Her husband understands the choice and also the effort that goes in it (applause for him!). But when someone, unintentionally, commented on how she can sit idle and watch TV all she wants just because she is a housewife, it got me thinking, on how we still have that outdated idea about a housewife. She is qualified and a very talented individual, she cook, reads, paints and what not. The choice was something that she made from all of her options, not something she was forced into. And its something she is enjoying. So how does someone who has never been in her shoes get to comment on her situation?
Well I for one person do not get that at all. One is entitled for one’s own opinion, but one doesn’t have the right to pass judgement on anyone.
I do not understand the dogma linked to the term ‘housewife’. We have grown up as a society, we have embraced numerous new phenomenon viz. inter caste and inter religion marriages, live in relationships, adoptions instead of giving birth, gay marriages, etc. You name it and we have it. We have understood their meaning and given them enough space.
We really should change this little fraction of old school impression we have about the term housewife. This whole impression is created as a result of TV serials, movies etc. As they mostly portray old school version on the housewives. I rather agree to this
Gone are those days, my friend. Its time to wake up and smell the coffee.