I’m NOT a housewife. Really, I am NOT. There is nothing wrong with housewife’ing but I do not have the requirements and strong personality necessary to excel at a vital position of the family’s success. It’s not that I’m a man and consider it “woman’s work”. I’m just not built for it. Look man, I’m telling you as a work-from-home father of four, dishes, clothes, cracks, sinks, bathrooms, yardwork, managing bills, tracking family income, kids’ activities, yardwork, homework, keeping everybody else positive, shhhhhhiiiiiiiid… For the life of me, I can’t fathom why ANYBODY would want that kind of hell.
Then, last night, I saw it. I saw a connection between housework and relationships that I’ve missed my entire life. It started with the usual, wife comes home from work but the kitchen was cluttered. I promise, not bad, just cluttered! My daughter was sick, hadn’t cleaned it, I hadn’t noticed, you know how a family gets busy. My wife mentioned, “Dang, kitchen not clean and I gotta cook.” Now, I’ve done the kitchen a million times, give or take 😉. Ok; let me scale that back, I’ve cleaned the kitchen when necessary. No idea what the numbers mean but I average cleaning the kitchen about 2-3x/mo while grinding out symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis, Spondylosis, Ulcerative Colitis. I work from home as an insurance agent, real estate professional and writer. Basically, I want it on record that I don’t sit at home, chillaxing, while my wife works. (Back to the story because I’ll get off-track😛) Soooo, wife mentioned kitchen and I ‘tidy it up’ real quick. I wasn’t paying too much attention because it just made sense. ALL cooks want to start in a clean kitchen. ALL hungry folks want cooks to start, in a clean kitchen. She just got home, I knock it off without a thought. It took 15-20min and dishes were put up, sink empty, counters clean. I don’t know where she was, chopping with the kids, showering, etc. but I heard her shock that it was done. “WHOA! Kitchen clean? Thanks!” Like I said, I’ve done the kitchen before, a lot. She says thanks, a lot, so nothing stuck out.
It’s Taco Tuesday so the kids grub hard and leave their mess. Yes, daily chores stipulate kids clean their areas after eating but dishes, leftovers, are waiting. I went ahead and started putting leftovers up, covering food, etc. She noticed and said, “Yo! I’m doing something different for us so don’t clean yet. I’m not done.” Me? I respond, “No problem. I’m still gonna put stuff away and tidy up. Least it’ll be somewhat clean for round two.” At THIS point, I can clearly see that I’ve scored some husband points because I was rewarded with THE wry smile and cut eye. I don’t know if EVERY wife does it but mine does, both my married potnas’ wives do it, I’ve even seen my Mom give it to my Dad. It does not guarantee draws or sex; it just means we, husbands, did something special. She relaxed, put her feet up, played on her phone, all while flirting with me for the next thirty minutes. It was so freaking obvious what I had done right, the damn kitchen! When she rose to cook our tacos, sweet potato based because I’m Pescatarian, I got a good, wet kiss and eye contact with the thanks for tidying up. Of course, I ended the night by putting away our leftovers and a final tidy up. Again, I received the wry smile and cut eye. That was two, TWO! “What are YOU up to?” she asked. She hung around, small talking about the progress with my book while I finished.
I REALLY wasn’t plotting on romance. I made sure to give her a head massage till she fell asleep. I wanted that to be the ending moment of of night. I know I’ve missed the connection of me doing housework to my wife’s happiness. Sure, I know I’m supposed to help (I DO!) but I’d never seen it play out so well before. I do housework and pride myself on it but now I question how much I’ve really done and have I been consistent. Maybe, I’ve just gotten so deep into Gratitude, Attitude and Passion that I notice it in others. I would love for that to be the case and think that’s it. I spent the night thinking of the smallest actions I could take with the biggest impact, putting the food up more, making the bed and cleaning out our bathroom sink. Each of these is a 5min activity that takes some responsibility off her plate and may earn me another wry smile and cut eye. 😅😂🤣 It’s not possible to believe my journey into Gratitude, Attitude and Passion would be complete with random IG and FB posts of gratitude. As I grow and develop my GAP, it becomes more important to sincerely express it. I find myself taking mental notes when others show gratitude and loving myself when I catch myself because I know it wasn’t always this way. I didn’t always find so much, in any effort.
Aight, I’ll bring the point home. I’m NOT a housewife but I absolutely share their passion in helping others. I can understand and appreciate the effort to know the little quirks of the individual family members. My wife doesn’t want a clean kitchen. She absolutely appreciates TF out of a clean kitchen. When the kitchen is clean, she can pour herself into cooking and relax. She sips wine, jams whatever is in her Bluetooth earbud and somehow gives everyone around her their necessary attention. A housewife knows quirks like these about everybody in the family. When I thought last night, everyone in my family has quirks that I’ve missed and now, I want to know them. I think I’m realizing how stressed my kids are and I’ve got to find their quirks, little things that alleviate their stresses. I am NOT a housewife because a housewife knows these things. It’s sooooooooo much more than ensuring an insurmountable mountain of daily chores are completed. It’s more than knowing the quirks, tunes, elements to your family’s success. Housewives know WHY their family strong and how to STRENGTHEN their weaknesses. I’m not a housewife but I will TRY while working from home.