A recent post on expat+HAREM has got me thinking about being at home and what it means to me.
I never had any desire to be a housewife, in fact as a teenager I went so far as to reject the idea of marriage and family, a sure case of baby going out with the bathwater. A lot had to do with my mother, from whom I felt a lot of mixed signals about her life at home with the kids. She wasn’t unhappy in dealing with children and house, and yet in retrospect I see she suffered from low self-esteem. As we grew older and she had time for hobbies and eventually work, she became more confident, stronger.
For me, I slipped into the role and yet am fully aware of it’s importance. In fact, while I’m not houseproud, I do take the role seriously perhaps too much so. I know how much my work eases the life of my family and now that I have time to work, I am reluctant to upset the whole routine. A recent piece in the New York Times prompted further thought, am I willing to sacrifice my family’s well-being for income?
Yet I still have a drive to earn money. And society here expects that I will do just that, everyone asks when I will work? As if I didn’t already. In most cases this is code for ‘when will you teach me English?’ As if language teaching is the only job available to me. Perhaps it is.
So I’ve taken the path of Skaian Gates English, working from home, earning some money and keeping the routine. We’ll see how it works out in the end.