Stay at Home Moms ARE Working Women
Working Women. That seems obvious, doesn’t it?
Yet how many women count themselves as a working woman?
Especially if they are not employed by a company and earning a take-home-and-bank paycheck?
They are in the dentist filling out address lines and checking boxes to indicate they have no life- threatening health problem and that they haven’t had a recent mental breakdown. They then come across the question – employment.
They pause and wonder what to write.
They may decide to leave it blank and instead check that they haven’t passed a kidney stone in the last year.
And yet, I know countless working women.
Who is cleaning the house? Making dinner? Filling out permission sheets and checking that homework is completed? Who is washing clothes and taking a sick dog to the vet? Who is volunteering at the library, the food bank, and leading a girl scout troop? Who is making a meal for the new mother at church, inviting neighbors to dinner, and leading a bible study? Who is coordinating their parent’s health care and hosting family dinners?
This is all work. Necessary and important work.
The world would collapse without mothers reminding their children to eat their vegetables, brush their teeth, and tie their shoes; if women quit reminding their mates to take their vitamins, send their mom a birthday card, and oh yes, Tuesday is trash day; or if women quit volunteering their evenings and not-so-spare hours, countless volunteer organizations and projects would fold up and close.
You may not receive a paycheck every month, paid vacations, job evaluations (unless you count such comments as, “this has too much salt,” as mini job evaluations), sick days, pre-set work breaks, and the most important kicker of all – a start and stop time, but that doesn’t mean you don’t do valuable necessary work that is as important as other work.
There are homeschool mommas who have been teaching their brood for twenty years. Bloggers who spend twenty hours a week encouraging others. Sunday school teachers who teach squirming children songs with God’s words. New mothers who are caught in the cycle of not having a shower every day and thinking diapers will never abate. Grandmas who are taking care of their grandchildren 5 days a week. Troop leaders who have been volunteering long after their children aged out. Movers and shakers who are organizing and setting projects in motion and starting non-profits.
Don’t tell me that none of that is work.
You don’t have to have a steady job with a paycheck to verify you are a working woman who is using her talents to serve the Lord and those around her. Lots of women have holy hustle and use it long past the working hours. I know many women who are working harder and longer hours than men. Women who are making a difference in their families, their churches, their communities and who do not have a traditional bring-home-the-paycheck job.
Let’s quit being embarrassed about our not having a traditional job and a company address to put down on forms, other than our homes. Let’s quit saying we don’t work and thereby discount our worth, and the worth of other women. Let’s quit poo-pooing our share of the work load. Let’s quit trying to be modest, humble, and negate our contributions to society.
Find something you do, something you enjoy, something you can write down in those employment places questions on all those forms we fill out. Teacher, Manager and Organizer of the Smith Firm, Philanthropist, Blogger, Manager of Possibilities, Future Shaper, Private Shopper, Decorator, Hustler of the Slow, First Chief, Gardner and Estate Manager. Vice President. Society Changer. Dream Promoter. Home Land Manager
Take your job seriously, because a lot of the people around you would be in a world of hurt if you went on strike tomorrow. And if you took a month off, the world would be begging you to return to work. That is how important your contributions are.
The next time someone asks if you work. Proudly say yes.
Because you do.
A lot more than you think you do, or give yourself credit for.
Theresa is an author, teacher, mother, and humor hunter. She writes to encourage, provide hope, and bring forth a smile. She blogs at TheresaBoedeker.com, has a humorous podcast about everyday life happenings, Life as it Comes (at i-tunes, Sitcher, and Google Play); and her favorite social media is Instagram.
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