May 7, 2010The New Front Line In Parenting
THE NEW FRONT LINE IN PARENTING
By Cheryl Gochnauer
I recently received the following email from Carrie, a Homebodies readerfrom California. Her comments were well-expressed and thought-provoking. I'd like to share them with you.
"I am a stay-at-home mom to my two-year-old daughter, Madeline. When I amnot changing diapers, filling juice cups, playing in the sandbox or blowingbubbles (not to mention hanging out the laundry, putting away the cleandishes, loading up the dirty dishes, picking up toys, etc.), I sometimeswrite or design websites.
"Today was a two-year-old day. My daughter wasn't listening to a word I wassaying. If I said, "Go up," she'd yell "NO!" and go down. By the end of theday, I was fried! But you know, I wouldn't trade the worst day at home forthe best day at an outside job. My husband, who is a steadfast supporter ofdoing what's best for our daughter, hence, my staying home, gets a bitjealous at times. And who can blame him? I have the best job on earth, andit pays nothing in terms of money, but is priceless in terms of what it doesfor my soul.
"My husband likes me at home for other reasons. A fastidious housekeeper, wecan both well imagine what life would be like if I worked outside the homeand then had to come home and complete my chores. That little person wouldget lost in the shuffle, be told to get out of the way, and be snapped at,I'm sure.
"I was part of a generation that was sold a bill of goods on working outsidethe home. I was in honors classes and graduated a semester early with a 3.87GPA. I went to college and did well there, too. Along the way, I was toldwhile sitting in class, 'Don't have babies, and if you do, don't let it interfere with your success.' We were groomed to become the next front line of the feminist revolution. We were bred to be the next generation of materialists and consumers.
"I have seen the results of the warehousing of children in my own extendedfamily. My niece and nephew are a breeding ground for every virus on theplanet. Parents regularly, knowingly, send their children into day caresick, since they have important meetings and appointments. My niece has hadover 100 different providers in the centers she's been to. She never knowswho will be taking care of her in any five-minute time period. She whines,cries, and we have watched her go from the bubbly baby new to daycare to thesullen first grader who looks as if she knows too much about getting lost inthe shuffle.
"I am part of a new front line - those of us who are reclaiming our pride inparenting. Those of us who know that Quality Time cannot be scheduled. IfMaddie wants a bubble bath at 2:16 in the afternoon, she can have one. Ifshe wants to color at 4:27, we can. In between it all, I make sure theironing, vacuuming, mopping and cleaning are done by the time my husbandgets home. Because of this, our stress level as a family is down, and ourenjoyment of the home up.
"I thank you for being a member of this force as well, because we are doingbattle. The rocks are being hurled at the castle, and it is us who stay athome who are the ones fortifying our homes in order that the attack notreach inside.
Forest Ranch, CA
(Comments? Contact Carrie or Cheryl by writing
. Also stop by
where you can interact with other parents on a variety of lively message boards. Her book, "
So You Want to Be a Stay-at-Home Mom
," isavailable through
Dr. Laura#146;s Reading Corner
. Copyright2001 Homebodies.Org, LLC. Permission granted for use on DrLaura.com.)
Posted by Staff at 1:55 AM