I have friends who plan on never marrying. Maybe having kids even isnt' in their forte or have told me that maybe a forever engagement, maybe a kid but not being married.
Its a soapbox I have. Its hard not to have when in so many ways it is my ideal, the life I chose and the one that brings me supreme joy (although at times its ugly, challenging and stink eye level). It is never lost or broken but marriages go through ups and down, challenges.
And in my experience it does give you an opportunity to become closer, to relearn how to forgive, to relearn how to be patient, to let someone else change (or yourself) because I am in it forever with this man no if's and or buts.
Cathi Haunauer wrote an article in "REAL SIMPLE" magazine july 2012 that I love. I love the magazine and many of its articles but this one was especially true to me and pricked my heart. My favorite is her last line
"I remind myself tha tbeing part of a team doesn't mean I'm Lazy or can't do it myself. It just means that, right now, I'm lucky enough to not have to".
So being a wife, being a homemaker, being religious. I have been told or said to "OH, you GET to stay at home"
"You do what your husband tells you to do, I would never do that"
"I could never be at home, I would go crazy, too boring"
or told by a family member "YOu have anymore kids someone else is going to have to get a job!" (meaning me who is a homemaker)
All interesting and shortsighted statements (probably like when I was barely pregnant for the second time and decided I needed a change and cut my hair into a pixie-with the help of a professional of course-and my blooming body couldn't keep balance with my ever shrinking head)
Its hard not to have a soapbox when so many of other people's ideals, beliefs are not my own. And sometimes I have second guessed myself and my roles in my partnership
"Gosh maybe I should take out the trash, move dead animals, fix sinks". but like Cathi said. right now I am lucky enough to not to have to.
I honestly believe 99 percent of women who have a partner who can support it (even if that means no cable, fancy cell phones, fancy clothes etc) can be Joyful homemakers full time. It is the best job in the world. But that doesn't mean it doesn't take pulling from the deepest part of yourself when you feel there is no deeper you can pull from. It doesn't mean that at times you think you "wasted" your education by not practicing in your field. It means you will have exchanged it for a period of time which is relatively short. The time when you are raising your kids in your home and being the number one caretaker for them.
It doesn't mean you get to have the cleanest house, the cleanest kids, the most toned body, the healthiest dinners everyday of the year (I mean maybe it will for someone but I have yet to meet a perfect anybody).
And as a wife I have certain jobs that I do and there are some jobs that my husband does with mingling in between. Just because someone wants something of you, expects something of you doesn't mean its bad if you fulfill those needs or expectations. Its part of a relationship where you aren't the only benefactor (kids take longer to become any kind of equal partner but really thats why they are children.....its our job as parents to take care of them).
And as a wife and mother, I have changed. I mean not just dramatically physically (you won't see me sporting little 7 for all mankind jeans anymore or Victoria secret bras) I most likely won't have straightened rootless hair or for that matter have stlyed hair except may be twice a week but my life is full of more potently awesome wonderful. The kind that doesn't age. I miss my old self sometimes (ok I miss that taut barely 20 body a lot) but I much prefer my new messier self with hanging skin. At least on the inside.
I am grateful to be a wife and mother and a homemaker. That as a wife I will know how to serve and help my partner and husband. Because he is important to me.