Homemaking In Motherhood:
Encouragement For The Weary Mom
Being a homemaker/housewife/mom is a significant role.
I think modern feminism has done us a great disservice in how we view the role of a homemaker. What comes to mind when you hear the word “homemaker”? Old fashioned? Out dated? 1950’s housewife?
For many generations now, it’s been seen as less valuable and unimportant work, and yet the Bible holds in in high regard.
Titus 2:4-5 New Life Version (NLV)
Older women are to teach the young women to love their husbands and children.
They are to teach them to think before they act, to be pure, to be workers at home, to be kind, and to obey their own husbands. In this way, the Word of God is honored.
When I was younger and was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I answered that I wanted to be a homemaker and a mom.
That wasn’t always a popular choice. Surely, I must’ve had some “higher” aspirations and a desire to go to college or university? But I had no desire to choose a career. I wanted to own a business someday (which was still undecided), but not before raising my little ones. I figured once the kids started school, I would start working again…little did I know I would be called to homeschool.
I was raised with the mindset that homemaking was a noble undertaking. I thought being a homemaker, housewife and mother was such a romantic idea. The idea of having my own family to cook and clean for was exciting, and I wanted to be good at managing the home…whatever that meant.
In the 1950’s being a wife and mother was the expectation for women, but in modern day, it seems to be less desirable.
Thankfully it looks like things are starting to turn around with blogging and YouTube. Homemakers are posting their cleaning and meal planning routines and something that used to be associated with my grandmother’s time, is now cool again…like some of the fashion these days ;)
Let’s face it, the tasks associated with homemaking are not going anywhere, whether we like the idea of homemaking or not. If you live in a home, wear clothing, spend money and eat, homemaking still applies. We just have many more modern conveniences at our disposal, and we aren’t expected to wear pearls or heels as we vacuum ;)
When I was growing up, my mom was a stay at home mom; homeschooling the 6 of us. She made home cooked meals, keep the house clean and she even taught us how to clean…although my brothers will deny it, so they don’t get stuck cleaning the bathroom!
My dad was the organizer and I remember watching him sort through drawers and cabinets, organizing items.
They worked together to manage the home, but because mom was home all day, the majority of keeping the home fell to her.
I couldn’t wait for my turn. Little did I know I was going to be disappointed and feel like a failure.
How I Failed At Homemaking
There was a time I felt like I was failing miserably in my role as a homemaker. I was discouraged and angry.
It wasn’t that I didn’t know how to manage my home, it was that I felt like I was failing because I couldn’t measure up to what I thought was the perfect homemaker/SAHM and what they would be doing. I wanted everything to be perfect at all times and I was resentful because it wasn’t possible, and I thought that somehow, I had dropped the ball.
I was miserable because I wasn’t enjoying this role that I had so looked forward to.
And I was angry because all my hard work seemed to be for nothing. It didn’t matter how hard I worked, it still needed to get done…again and again, and again.
So much for the romantic ideas about homemaking.
It took a while, but I finally woke up and realized I was believing a lie. I thought that my worth and value were wrapped up in how well I kept my home, which made me feel terrible because it was impossible to keep things perfect.
Letting go of that perfectionist mindset lifted a huge burden off my shoulders when it came to my homemaking.
What Does It Mean To Be A Homemaker As A Mom?
Being a homemaker and a mama are important work! It’s a big job and an amazing opportunity. One that I prayed for, for many years. Even though I enjoy it now, it hasn’t always been easy. I struggled to enjoy the role I had desired for so many years.
What about you? Is keeping your home and raising your children more frustrating and overwhelming than you thought it would be?
Being the manager of the home is more than just cleaning. It’s noble work that impacts our families in big ways.
Having been a wife and homemaker for the last 14 years, and mother for 13, I have a better understating of what it really means to manage the home as a homemaker, than I did when we first started our family.
When I first got married, I thought I had this homemaking thing down…I was so naïve.Before having children, I would clean my house every Friday and it would mostly stay that way until the following Friday. I thought that was all there was to it, but I was wrong.
Lessons Learned On This Homemaking Journey
4 kids later I realized that:
· keeping a clean home is not all there is to being a homemaker
· cleaning once a week and having it stay that way, all week…let alone a day, is not possible, because we live here after all ;)
· managing the home changes with the seasons of life and that’s ok
· our attitude and mindset affect our role as homemaker more than anything else
· instead of being miserable about having to keep a home, be thankful that you have a home to keep clean
· instead of being upset that the kids make messes…all. day. long. Be thankful for these little ones
· instead of being frustrated about having to cook AGAIN, be thankful for food to fill our bellies
Over the years I have learned new skills and learned to simplify. I find joy in expanding my meal repertoire, learning to make more items from scratch, finding ways to clean faster, experimenting with different DIY cleaners, or trying different types of organizing. And I LOVE it! I find it such a huge sense of satisfaction and accomplishment when I know I’m keeping my home well.
The reward for keeping your home is having a clean home and the satisfaction of doing a job well. Stop chasing the elusive perfect home. Instead, do your best to keep you home, which requires self-discipline and good habits. When we adjust out mindset to look at the positive aspects of homemaking, we will enjoy the process more.
What Homemaking is not
Being a homemaker is not about perfection. It’s not about impressing people with your skills, how clean and organized your home is or how amazing your meals are.
If you do those well and enjoy doing them, that’s great. Do them because you want to be a good steward of your home and because you want to bless your family, not because you’re trying to present the image of Pinterest perfection.
The tasks that come with managing a home never end. There will always be laundry to wash, food to make, dishes to clean. That’s the reality of homemaking. When we make our peace with it, we will enjoy it so much more.
Personally, I had to come to a place where I accepted that. I was always working for it to be done and done perfectly, only to realize it will never be perfect.
To this day, my home is never in perfect order; in fact, it’s rarely all in order, all at the same time. Stop by unexpectedly and there could be dishes in the sink, Lego all over the carpet, floors that need washing, clean laundry sitting on the couch, toothpaste in the bathroom sink or fingerprint covered windows.
That’s just part of family life. When we finally realize that that’s ok, we can breathe a sigh of relief.
What Homemaking Is:
An opportunity to…
· bless our families
· be good stewards
· learn self-discipline
· create good habits
· create a pleasant environment for our loved ones
So, mama, let me ask you. As a homemaker, do you realize the value of your work? Never lose sight that your job is an important one.
I pray that you will realize your important role and find joy in the day to day tasks of homemaking, while giving yourself grace to let go of the perfectionist mindset.
I’m cheering you on!
If you’re looking for some practical tips on homemaking, read: Homemaking 101-Where To Start And What To Do