Today Mom came into my room, sat on my bed, started at me for a long time, let out a heavy sigh and finally said:
'You know, I'm really worried about you.'
This scene has been repeating itself about once a week for the past several months.
Allow me to explain that lately, listening to my conversations, seeing my lack of enthusiasm about pursuing a higher degree or competitive career, and observing my passion about everything that has to do with home and family, Mom became seriously concerned that I 'actually might carry out this stupid plan of mine to become a housewife'.
I love my Mom. I really do, and I don't want to complain, as I know that my little discouragements are nothing, comparing to what others have to face. But it's not exactly pleasant, if you know what I mean, to listen time and time again to the same things: 'you must have a career to secure your future, you must be a professional to be fulfilled, you need the money to be able to give more (more what?) to your children, you can't depend on a man, your husband might be unable to take care of you, you'll never be able to make a living on one income…' – and on and on and on. I'm sure that almost every woman of this generation who chose to dedicate herself to home heard all of it and more, many times. Oh, and this look of deepest concern, when she sees me enjoying something as mundane as hanging the laundry, baking a pie, or knitting!
And then she said something that actually got me laughing out loud:
'It troubles me that you have no ambitions.'
'No ambitions? What do you mean, Mom? I have the highest ambitions – to become a wife, a helpmeet, a lifelong partner of one wonderful and special man; to be a joyful mother to as many children as God gives me, and raise them in love of Him; to build a sweet and beautiful home and fill it with peace and joy, creating memories that will last a lifetime and beyond; what paycheck can ever promise me these glorious perspectives?'
'It's all very nice, but you know what I mean. Real ambitions. To have enough money to be able to afford a more affluent lifestyle; trips abroad; nice clothes; eating out as much as you like. Don't you want all that?'
I know it was meant to sound very appealing, but it didn't tempt me even for a second. And what if we ask ourselves what real ambitions are – for short term goals, or for a lifetime? For things that won't matter in ten years, or for things that will make an impact in the life of many generations after us? The answer is pretty obvious to me, but how often do we find the world around us obsessing with the short-term, the self-centered, the selfishly ambitious? I know Mom meant no harm. I know she loves me. But I just can't agree with her point of view.
Not long ago I had to face the prospect of losing all my money. At first I was very stressed and worried about it, but then it taught me an important lesson. First, I realized, I'm too attached to my possessions. Sure, I need enough money for the real necessities: food, shelter, clothes, basic health care; I always had more than I actually needed, which brings me to the second point – I asked myself: was there a time in my life when He hasn't provided for me? Did I go hungry, cold and homeless? No. Not one day! So why am I worried now, instead of trusting in Him?
Fulfilling my calling as a woman is just another aspect of relying on Him. It might be uncommon, it might be counter-cultural, it might be not what everyone else are doing – but I won't let it stop me.