Sunday, December 25, 2016

She is a homemaker, not a housewife

Photo of my wife Amrita Rai with River Swan at the background. Image shot in Perth, Western Australia in 2013

When people ask me about my wife’s profession, I just tell them that she is a homemaker because she is the one who actually transforms my house into a beautiful home. As one of my lecturers had once said when I was in college, there is a huge difference between a house and a home. A house is only a physical structure whereas a home is where we get absolute comfort, warmth and happiness. Considering the amount of sacrifices she makes every day at home, I think the term ‘housewife’ does not fully define her role. Whenever we hear someone say that his wife or mother is a housewife, the general impression we get is that she is jobless and stays at home idly. But if our wife or mother who stays at home were to prepare her Individual Work Plans to show us what she does every day, I think she would have more responsibilities than most of us who go to office.

Her routine job starts right from the early morning and goes until bedtime every day. She cannot say “I could not sleep properly the whole night. I want to sleep until 9 o’clock”. She cannot say “I have no appetite, I don’t want to cook”. She cannot say “I am feeling lazy; I don’t want to go for vegetable shopping”. Or she cannot say “I am having terrible headache, I want to sleep all day”. When the right time strikes, she has to be up to make sure we all have what we need. For instance, my wife has a multi-dimensional role. She is a baby-sitter, she is a cleaner, she is a cook, she is a gardener, she is a laundry-woman and now with the arrival of a new car, she has become a driver. She also manages all the finances of the family. I earn the money but it’s she who works magic with it. She knows how to prioritize the family’s needs and spends carefully. If I were to do it myself, I am sure I would let the family starve within few weeks of receiving my salary because I know I am not good at financial management. I am lucky that I have got a wife who knows how to take care of family matters well. She is also aware that positive energies at home come from how you arrange things within the house and she often changes the room setting to make sure that it really looks like a home. Since she can see, she does all the planning and designing. I just have to lend her my physical strength to move the furniture and beds to their right positions as per her wish.

So when people ask you what does your wife or mother do, do not tell them that she is only a housewife. It would be a disgrace to her profession especially considering the tremendous job she does every day for the wellbeing of the family and that too without expecting anything in return. To be honest, she hardly gets the chance to take rest. She cannot afford to remain idle. When we leave home in the morning, we leave her to do all the dishes, cleaning of the rooms, washing the cloths and so on. And when we come home in the evening, she is always there to greet us with a hot cup of tea and snacks and with that starts her evening shift. So respect your wife, respect your mother and respect your sisters, because they are the ones who bring the real beauty of life into the otherwise lifeless house and turns into a comfortable and peaceful home. They are the homemakers, not housewives as you perceive.

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