Today's women have it bad, really bad. The world expects them to be super successful at everything and yet have a serene smile on the face with perfectly coiffed hair and pale pink unchipped nails. Most people I met pre-work would ask me what I was doing and I'd grin and say that I was enjoying motherhood. Either people would stare at me as if my words were in Aramaic or smile smugly thinking of how exalted their positions were. In fact I have known friends who'd call themselves "only" homemakers, bah! Now that I have begun work (and it has been an exhausting juggler's act for 5 weeks now), I am struggling to find enough time to do everything. However, all the people I've met without exception, now nod sagely and smile appreciatively when I tell them that I work fulltime! Again, such easy judgement. As if life is easier.
My mom worked too, She was always running around in the evenings with Bank work or Community service or some extra school work. She was quite frazzled. But my wise energetic grandmom was. She was the anchor in my house. The house revolved around her. Even in those days, she believed that cooking and cleaning were best outsourced. So, we had a cook and a maid to do the housework. She read voraciously, listened to music and talked to everyone and most importantly listened to everyone. She is 82 years old now. And doesn't regret any decision she made, except not traveling to Kashmir when she had the chance.
That 'anchor' is an important fixture in every household. Despite the necessity of an anchor, the women who decide to stay-at-home are laughed at, patronized and ridiculed. But I salute these women, who put in everything to make the lives of their immediate family so much more meaningful. But the world won't let her be.
Does it mean working women ought to stay at home? No. I don't plan to quit my job anytime soon. I am enjoying it! But the anchor is important. The anchor - systematic time together is important, I've realized. I am working hard at getting the anchor into place.... God help me!