I am still reacting to a podcast I listened to recently. I was one of the targeted women he spoke about; traditional wives. He said that it was considered by some, a “dangerous trend” “Trad wives” De repente it’s becoming popular? This dialogue pulled up that long squished question which I sometimes still struggle with in my life, “What do you do Rosie?” My answer? “Well, I’m, ummm, I’m a homemaker” (a nervous laugh usually followed) “I take care of Ben and the kids” and the response was “Oh, ummm, well that’s good…” From there, I would descend into looking for and sharing things that they might consider “worthy” Hijole! More than 3 decades have passed and the question can still rankle me. Y porque sera?
Those long repressed feelings of vergüenza rose up to laugh at me. I went to college but never got my degree. Wanting accreditation is one of my biggest hurdles, asi es, pay attention, see what I’ve done! And what have I “done?” I’ve been a traditional wife, a woman who takes care of the affairs of her home and watches over the needs of her children. I’ve been doing this now for 34 years of my life. Where are my degrees? Where’s my accumulated wealth? It has definitely kept me humble.
I respect a woman who has worked hard, been disciplined and focused and completes her educational goals, I may even be a little celosa. Jealous, because it’s something I didn’t do. Heavy sigh… but also, Shout out to that woman who puts away that degree for her family.
My story falls somewhere in the crevices of those scenarios. I am a Christian woman. Jesus is the love and Lord of my life. Every crossroads I come to in my life, He has been with me. At 19, when I chose to drop out of school midway through my 2nd year of university, it was hard. My apa was disappointed. I was so sorry, I yearned for his approval, I was supposed to be a lawyer he could be proud of, but instead I let him down. My future looked bleak to me. How in the world would I survive? God helped me. As I was moving on, young and hopeful with my whole life ahead of me, I came to another crossroads of life, Marriage. It wasn’t in my plans, well at least not until I was old. God was with me and I made the right choice to marry my Benjamin. Very soon after that I was the mother of his children. I couldn’t decide on how to describe this last bit of my history. Doesn’t it sound a bit dramatico? “The mother of his children” y pues, I am, they are his, and it pleases me to say it, declare it on the roof tops of my blog and to anyone that will hear me tell of my life as a traditional wife.
I wish I could sit here at my desk and tell you how glorious it always was. It wasn’t. I wanted financial independence, it humbled me so much to depend completely on my Benjamin, but I knew it was what he needed and what I needed and then what our kids needed. I wish I could tell you that living on a tight budget was “no big deal” Hijole! It was, and it was harder still when our kids were growing up and seeing what other kids wore and did. It was hard to tell them, “no we can’t do that this week” I wasn’t purposely boycotting McDonalds, es que, it made more sense to serve lunch at home, picnics with homemade food were a must. There were plenty of mistakes we made and many things we left out of our lives, to a certain degree I wish I would have always had the financial liberty to buy our kids those name brands and fun things. Living on one income kept the door open for me to take care of our children. It was a sacrifice for all of us. In fact, I actually went out into the workforce on a few occasions to alleviate the financial burden. Pero, making more money never really helped. I spent more money, the house was neglected, I worried constantly, wondering if the babysitter would take care of mis hijos like I would. The kids missed me and worst of all it separated me from my beloved y no crees, the whole family could feel that shift in our home.
Being home put me into a good watchful position. A place where I could see my children when the possible dangers, the bad choices and the hurting moments arrived. Gracias a Dios for this position, how did I use it? I prayed, it was a burden I couldn’t carry alone or at all sometimes. There were times I intervened, when my child was in danger physically, verbally, emotionally and mentally. There were times that I had to let them work out their dilemma and definitely their salvation, I couldn’t force my faith on them, as much I wanted to. I didn’t catch everything, I’m shocked at the things my kids uncover now and I wonder how it passed by me?! and por supuesto there were things that I didn’t handle perfectly or even correctly. Many mothers suffer from condemnation,” if only I would have done…” I have fallen into that pit plenty of times, gracias a Dios that he pulls me out everytime. Sabes que? The children are gone now, but not too far away. I’m still a traditional wife, very dependent on my Cold Blooded Englishman. I’m still taking care of my Benjamin,and when I miss the opportunity to serve him, I feel ripped off.
Daniella suggested that I write a nice job description of a tradwife? I don’t know if I could. It’s hard work, long hours, it’s messy most of the time and very few breaks. Why in the world did I do it? I tried to say “because I wanted to” pero honestamente, when I was young I always thought and said I don’t ever “just” want to be a wife and mother; a homemaker, like mi ama.
Pero pues the woman, the nurturer that I was created to be, rose to the occasion when that life choice presented itself and God made a way. I’ve experienced the benefits of love, peace and joy as we have worked on our marriage relationship. I feel such pleasure to see our children grow into good people in the community, happy to give back. I have felt incredible relief as I watch them still putting their faith in Christ, like we taught them at home. I hold on to a treasure of cards my children have given me over the years, telling me how grateful they are that I have been their mother. And what can I say about being able to maintain my home and receive my growing family, gracias a Dios, may I never forget all His benefits.
One dilemma I always faced was answering the question “Rosie what do you do?” and sometimes it made me wonder. What do I do? Pero, mira nomas, now when people ask me “What do you do?” I’ll have the trendy right answer.