Do you take delight walking at the beach?
We usually don't leave home to go on a vacation. Why not? We are blessed to be living in an area where others are dreaming of spending their time during the summer.
I'm so grateful for that, especially during my walks at the beach early in the morning. Some mornings I get sidetracked but most of the time I enjoy being there — watching and listening the waves coming ashore, smelling the sea breeze, and reaching down to pick up some of the most beautiful sea shells and stones. I always find it amazing how these beauties sparkle — right there, at the place where I'm finding them. And how many times do I pick them up to take them with me! I love looking at them. But, you know what? I'm always a bit disappointed after taking them home. There is something missing when they are out of place: they aren't nearly as magnificent as they are at the beach.
Could it be that women who are taken out of place are losing a bit of that "sparkle" that makes them so special?
I know that this post is very similar to last week's Homesick. Still, it is something so dear to my heart. So, please bear with me. (Thank you!)
Today, just before this year's summer break, the ladies of my Bible study had come together for breakfast. Some of us talked about college degrees and on-going education for women. I mentioned my own degree, saying: "I have degree — in baking and cooking, cleaning, and other household tasks. I've learned it at home." One of the ladies agreed and said: "Yes, you have a degree in domestic science."
The world is looking down on homemakers, though. So what? At several stages in my life I had the chance to go for a college degree but I refused again and again. Did I ever regret it? Looking at it through worldly-oriented eyes: perhaps. Looking at it from an eternal point of view: not at all! It might not give the "reward" (to self) that some women are asking for. And, at least for some of us, it takes more time until we find true contentment in it — a contentment that the world will boldly promise us but isn't really capable of giving to us.
It's nearly two weeks since my last post and it has been two weeks before that one, too. I have been kept busy doing all kinds of things. I didn't have much time to do what I love most: homemaking and writing.
The last four weeks have been filled with such busyness but this week's schedule topped them all. I haven't felt this exhausted in ages. Running from one appointment to the next, keeping myself occupied with giving a lending hand here and there, some things — and somebody — suffered. I have not only put aside writing my blogs, but I have also neglected looking after my husband's needs. My home hasn't been kept as well as I would have liked to.
I felt so badly out of place this week that I was very much looking forward to getting back on track again. I longed to slip back into the fulfilling role of being a wife and homemaker — and a writer, too.
Do you ever feel homesick at times? When working outside your dominion do you feel an urgency of being back home again?
I grew up in a more or less traditional Christian home. My parents had a business with my mom working close to full time hours. I've always admired her talent to keep her household running. She wasn't that great of a cook — we often ate take away food at home — but now and then she would bake delicious cakes and she always kept her house spotless. If you could have taken a look inside the chest of drawers, cupboards and wardrobes in our home, you surely would have been amazed at how clean and tidy they were. She did a good job being a part time homemaker. Sadly, most of her life her focus had been on worldly things, beauty, and wealth.
My aunt was a full time homemaker. Her house was not as spotless as ours but her pantry offered an abundance of homemade canned products from her garden like fruit, juices, and vegetables. She baked more breads and cakes than my mom. She sew beautiful dresses, shirts, and various other clothing. When I was growing up I thought that she really enjoying keeping her home. She penny-pinched and did not waste money on fancy things — neither for herself nor for her family.
They both got married when they were still very young. My mom had a full time job working outside her home. My aunt was a full time homemaker. I doubt that neither one nor the other found real joy in keeping the family home. Sadly, neither one nor the other has passed on her knowledge of homemaking to the next generation.
In a world in which our roles and identities are so badly distorted, very few of us can build our homes on a solid foundation. Not many women will get a good start into the life as a young homemaker. And who, if any, is teaching the young girls today — what it means to be a keeper at home?