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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Being a “stay-at-home” mom and a homemaker!

I had romantic notions about everything when I was young and unmarried! I was not very ambitious about my career and knew that all I wanted eventually was a good husband and a house to call my own. My own mother was a homemaker and I felt that I wanted to do the same.Therefore, after getting married I stayed at home and proceeded to become a “homemaker”. I forgot all about my career as a dentist, and settled down as a wife and daughter-in-law! Now, mind you, I had been working before my marriage. And somewhere at the back of my mind that option, that I could start working again at any time I wanted, was always there. My husband was quite agreeable to my choices and he left it to me to decide if I wanted to stay at home or continue with my work.But, I felt strongly at the time about staying at home. I felt I was making the “Right” choice. I thought it was more important to look after the home and hearth and maintain “good” relationships with all the relatives, specially the “in-laws”. And so I set about my life, trying to be a dutiful wife, daughter-in-law, mom etc……Well, as life proceeded on I learnt a lot of lessons the hard way. Life was not as easy as I thought I could make it to be! People don’t respond to you the way you want them to! In the end there comes a time when you begin to feel that all is futile! That being a “homemaker” is a thankless and most unappreciated job. People start taking you for granted! I started hearing comments like- “You can easily do this or that, you are at home whole day.” They start treating you as if you are a brainless idiot and are sitting at home only because you probably can’t get a job outside! Or worse that nobody wants you, as you are incapable of any kind of work!All those years (11years) went in looking after my son and trying to make a “home” of some sorts! I avoided meeting any of my classmates or colleagues as I used to feel awkward in replying to their inevitable question of “what are you doing these days.” I knew that all my contemporaries were far ahead of me in their respective careers! There were times when I began to feel that maybe I should have continued working and made something of myself! Sitting at home, I started feeling that the grass was greener on the other side. I began to lose confidence in myself, I didn’t feel like making conversations with people (specially, working ones) as I felt that they were probably looking down at me! And, soon I began thinking that maybe I ought to start working again, to gain respect, to gain confidence, to gain self importance ……………….!And I finally got the opportunity that I was looking for. I opted for a job in a family welfare clinic as a dentist. Now, it has been one year since I have been working. And now that I have tasted what it feels like to work outside, I still feel confused as to whether it was better to stay at home and look after my family or to work and feel frustrated that I am not really getting anywhere?

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