What do you think of when you hear the words ‘Stay At Home Wife’? You automatically think cleaning. A woman who stays at home and cleans all day, right? Yep. Me too, sadly. That really isn’t what it is all about. It took a conversation with a stranger recently to remind me of that. I am so much more than that.
On the 4th of July I went to work with my husband. Nathan works in a restaurant, and there is a beautiful outdoor patio that is nestled along a river, and it is one of my favorite places to go and watch fireworks on the 4th of July. Because I can see them from several different places, all from one vantage point. Perfect. I was sitting at my table and this older man walks up and asks me if I’m sitting by myself and would I mind if he sat at my table? I’ve done this exact thing myself there during the holiday and couldn’t find an open table. So I was more than happy to let him sit with me, and his wife joined us a few minutes later. They introduced themselves and we had the usual pleasantry of small talk. His name was Fred and hers was Bea.
Bea was German, had a lovely accent and that made chatting with her fun. We talked about Nathan working there, and that is why I usually come here for the holiday. So obviously they knew what my husband did for work. Next up, Bea asked probably the single most awkward question ever to me. Do you work? Well, no. I am a stay at home wife. That question is awkward because when I answer no I don’t work, there’s such a negative stigma attached to it. Like, I’m less of a person because I don’t have a real job. Real meaning outside of my home.
Most people automatically picture a woman spending her entire day cleaning.. Cue the image from 1945 with the white picket fence, 3 bedroom home, family car, and spotless house. It almost has a sexist vibe to it when I say I’m a stay at home wife. Like women who stay at home have no depth to their personality or intelligence kind of thing. That is the stigma attached to that title.
I fully expected this time to be no different than any other person who has ever asked me if I worked or what I did for work. Here comes the surprise. Both of them praised me for doing this! Bea had been a stay at home wife herself, so she understood exactly what it meant, and it reminded me just how much it means to me. It was such an amazing feeling to find another person who has done this and chat about it.
Because of being a stay at home wife, I get to explore my creative side because I have the time. I get to crochet, sew, paint, remodel my home, and so much more. For me, it’s taking care of my family, which consists of my husband and me. But that is kind of a big deal for me. I’m still working. I just don’t need to go outside my home to do so, and I’m not any less of a person because I do this.
We talked about recipes and what was a favorite for our husbands. Which was seriously fun to explain to each other. Nathan’s (my husband) favorite and most requested dish is my stuffed peppers. Fred’s is cabbage rolls. Both are fairly labor-intensive meals. But given the fact we both stay at home, it’s not really difficult to make. I am not so caught up in being busy that I can’t take the time to make my husband’s favorite meal. A meal that is made with love.
We chatted about craft projects and things like that. One of the things I love to do is sew. I’ve made blankets for many friends and family. Now you think, a blanket can’t possibly be that exciting. No, it’s really not. But when my husband comes home from work in the early morning hours and it is cold, he can curl up with his that I made specifically for him, and enjoy it while he’s relaxing and playing a video game. It makes him smile because it was something I took the time and effort to create for him to stay warm. He’s always telling me in the winter how amazing that is and that was the best thing I’ve ever made for him.
That right there is exactly why I love being a stay at home wife. I have the time to create useful things that are made with love and make someone smile. That is important to me. I’ve crocheted dish rags many times. Those are useful for us, and we didn’t have to go buy them at the store. If one comes apart or is old, I can make another one. Yarn isn’t expensive, and it takes maybe 30 minutes. Perfect.
I look around my house, and I see hard work. A clean house and see useful things I’ve made like blankets, dish rags, and so much more. Upcycled projects, a remodeled home. I see hours of hard work and I feel proud of what I’ve done. I love the fact my husband can come home and enjoy a home. The house I’ve turned into a home.
Yes, there is a huge difference between a house and a home. A house is somewhere you rent, so to speak. You’re roommates with the house. It has zero personality, and you just sort of crash there. My home is filled with pride, joy, and love. That makes me happy, because I have given both Nathan and myself a space to relax and enjoy. It may not be the biggest house out there, but it is perfect for us because it is ours and we’ve made it perfect.
I distinctly remember having a chat with Nathan over dinner recently about the meal, and thinking back to the days when we were dating and I first made it for him. He called it comforting the other day. That is a huge compliment! Being able to give someone that comfort and joy just by cooking them a meal is a pretty amazing feeling. The recipe was parmesan dijon chicken.
So being a stay at home wife is not such a bad thing. My conversation with Bea reminded me how much joy I take in that title, and that I shouldn’t be embarrassed by it. So now when someone asks me if I work, I can honestly and without guilt say, yes. I work in my home. Because it is something I’ve worked hard at doing and making it as close to perfect as I can. There is a lot of joy in that feeling.
Chatting with Bea reminded me not to be embarrassed by the title of Stay At Home Wife. It’s actually a pretty great title to have! That day I learned to embrace and love my title. That is who I am, and I absolutely love it.
This reminded me to embrace who I am and that is a journey I am currently on. I am embracing my title of stay at home wife. The title of blogger. My journey to become The Prepping Wife. All of these things are who I am, and that is just perfect. Embrace who you are, and never apologize for it. Never allow someone to make you feel bad for who you are. Because who you are is exactly who you should be. Who you want to be.
Speaking of embracing who I am, I have created a vision board doing exactly that. Check out my blog post about it because it is such an amazing thing! I am in love with it, and looking forward to telling you all about it too.