One of you ladies asked me the following question:
Do you have neighbors you can visit with during the day? Do you have activities or hobbies apart from your family? Other professionals get breaks, so I am having a hard time getting my mind around not needing to do anything but home-making round the clock.
I don't see being a wife, mother an homemaker as a profession; it's what I live and breathe every second of every day, and also what I love the most. I don't have shifts that can be over and done with. I wouldn't have it any other way, and I'm thankful for the privilege to be there for my family, to keep my home, to hold my baby any moment of the day or night when I am needed.
I do have "my own" things; I don't see hobbies and friends as something that prevents me from doing my "real" job. You see, I've noticed that there is an incredible pressure on stay-at-home mothers to prove that they aren't wasting their time at home, which often causes us to feel a twinge of guilt for spending twenty minutes with a book, and I don't think it's fair - we are in no less need of recharging our batteries than those who work outside the home.
In my spare time, I enjoy writing - stories, poems, journals, you name it. Also here on this blog, of course! Writing rejuvenates me, I have been doing it throughout most of my adult life and I would miss it terribly if suddenly had to stop. And reading - I've always been a bookworm, a quiet hour with a favorite book to me is as comforting as a mug of hot chocolate. I can strongly relate to what Pendragon said in a comment a few days ago:
"My ultimate idea of home is a place with books everywhere and every spot from the bed to the couch in the living room to the front porch to the grass outside representing a spot to curl up and read and think. To me, home is a place where the hours pass by very slowly and one has the luxury of absolute privacy and knowing one will not be bothered."
Among other favorite things of mine, I love the luxurious feeling of soft yarn sliding between my fingers, and enjoy knitting and crocheting. I expect each one of us finds joy, comfort and relaxation in different things - some of which can be even directly related to our work as homemakers, such as gardening, soap-making and canning.
I have friends - though admittedly, not too many, as I've always been an introvert - and I often stop for a chat with a neighbour over our clotheslines. It's true that I don't often mention my friends or family here - partly because I want to keep private, partly because a blog cannot be a true mirror of one's life. We also live in a remote area, which means that we don't see our friends and family on a daily basis - we knew moving here would not be without challenges, and we love it.
Of course, most of my time is spent taking care of my baby and my home, and I believe it's very important to find a balance here - when you are the manager of your own time and you spend your days at home, it's easy to become distracted and waste far more time on hobbies than you would think reasonable. A short break can stretch into hours and "extras" can become all-consuming. That is hardly the point of being home full-time - while most of us undoubtedly seek a less stressful lifestyle, it doesn't mean we should become unproductive.
Indeed, we homemakers must be very careful when balancing the needs of our family and our needs for rest and refreshment - self-discipline and careful time-management are the key.