Saturday, February 5, 2011

Homemaker...

Tomorrow I will teach the lesson "Preparing to Become an Eternal Companion." In preparing this lesson, I was struck by the term Homemaker. The stereotype is the stay at home mom who cooks, cleans, and sews.

What strikes me about this lesson is that preparing to become an eternal companion is more than just learning to cook, clean, sew and take care of a home. Preparing to become an eternal companion also means educating yourself, both in spiritual and secular matters.

I have never been one to rely on the testimony of others, and I knew that as a wife this would continue. I did not want to be a wife who relied on her husband's spirituality instead of my own. Heavenly Father has an eternal companion, and I am convinced that she is just as spiritually strong as he is. As a young woman, I knew that to be a good wife and mother, I had to have my own spiritual strength.

I have also never been one to rely on the intelligence of others to get me through life. Truth be told, I have always been super competitive in academics. I know it sounds vain, but I like being intelligent. As a student, I liked doing well in school, and I loved to be the smartest in the class. I always knew that I would go to college, but at a young woman, I was always told that my husband's education was more important than my own. To this I always thought, "Um, that is CRAP!  Why should my husband's education be more important than my own?"

The thought of marrying a man who put his own education above my own was deplorable and just plain wrong. My education is just as important as my husband. And if a man was going to be my eternal companion, he should not only understand that, but respect it as well.

Back to the word homemaker. It is my responsibility to make my house a home.  I am a good cook. I do the laundry, I keep my house clean. I have a sewing machine, but I really have no interest in sewing.   However, making a home is more than just those things. I am a good mother; I love my sons. I take care of them. I nurture them. But being a wife and mother means more than that. Being an educated woman makes for a better wife and mother; it makes for a better homemaker. If my husband comes home and cannot carry on an intelligent conversation with me, then what is the point?  If I do not understand basic economics and household finances, then what is the point? If I cannot help my children with their homework because all I wanted to be when I grew up was a wife and mother, then what is the point?  If my children cannot look at their mother and see the value of education, then what is the point?

Making a home is so much more than cooking, cleaning, and sewing. When my son was three years old and asked my how planes stay in the air, I was able to answer him without using google. When my son was four years old and asked why all of his toys were made in China, I was able to answer him without turning to google. I use my college education every single day as a mother, and I use more than just my degree in English Literature and Language. My children saw their dad support me in going to school to receive my Master of Arts degree. They saw me supporting their dad while he received his own MBA.  (We are not completely crazy; we got our degrees at different times.) My children saw the blessings that have come from the sacrifices we made for our education. Our children have watched as we became better people.  My children know that our house is a home because of all of these things.

I truly hope that as I teach the girls, they understand that being a homemaker is more than the stereotype. There is a greater responsibility to making a home than just being able to cook, clean, and sew.

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