Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Curves in the road

I have recently received a very touching message from a young woman who feels very home-focused, and desires marriage and family most of all, but as she is currently single her family very strongly feels the necessity (due to various circumstances) of her going through college and obtaining a job. Here is part of the message I wrote to her in response.

I have been thinking about your letter for these past few days, wondering how to best phrase all the many things I would like to say to you... as someone a little older (not much - certainly not enough to be your mother, but enough to be an older sister!).

The first, and perhaps the most important thing is, that life runs a rocky course, taking us to places we never though we'd like/choose for ourselves. If you are at point A, and would like to go to point B, and it seems to you as though you know the straightest and best path to point B, it still doesn't mean that is the path you are meant to take. It isn't always possible to do what seems the very best, or what someone else is doing. 

The good news, however, are that G-d has a plan - a plan which sometimes involves taking us just where we are meant to be, through places where, as it seems, we are not meant to be at all, in His perfect way and His perfect time. I have experienced it many times myself, and looking back, I have marveled at how, though each step of the way might have seemed a step backward, the way eventually led forward.

If you pray and seek G-d's will for your life, as a young woman desiring marriage and family, and to be in her own home, you need not fear, even if circumstances temporarily take you - seemingly - astray. As long as your heart and mind are focused on what you want to become, you are on the right path. Almost without you being aware of it, your thoughts and actions will be directed towards that dream you are praying about, and when you look back, you will eventually see that each and every step you were made to take was, ultimately, necessary.

Even if you cannot refuse taking the route your family believes is best for you, you can still carve out time to do and learn what you love, and to guard your heart for the right man whom, I hope, you will meet later - there is no knowing how much later - down the road. I sincerely hope that this was, in some little way, helpful, and that things work in a most wonderful and special way in your life. 


melinda said...

As an encouragement to your reader, life also took an unexpected path for me. I always wanted to be a stay at home mom since I was a little girl. My parents wanted me to attend college. I did and found a job shortly thereafter.

I often felt like I would never have my dream of being a wife and a mother. God brought my now husband into my life after two job changes. We have been happily married for almost three years and have a 15 month-old. My husband always wanted me to stay home, and I was happy to do so!

Although I would have preferred to get married at a younger age, that was not the plan God had for me. Looking back, I am so thrilled for God's choice for me, and the wait was well worth it.

Mrs. White said...

This is a beautiful response. It will encourage many people regardless of their trial or current circumstances. Thank you!

Mrs. White
The Legacy of Home

Aunty Amanda said...

An excellent response. I would just like to add a little to it and tell a short story. I suggest that she consider a college major that meets two requirements: (1) it can support her until she marries and (2) it can enhance her family life in the long run. Possibilities include early childhood development, elementary education, nutrition, nursing, and others.

And now my British mother-in-law's story. She desired nothing more than marriage and children. She chose to study home economics. Her program included a 6 month stint of pediatric nursing. This was in the late 1930s and early 1940s. She was assigned to the pediatric nursing segment of the course first; afterwards, she would do the home economics. But during her short nursing course, World War II broke out. All changes were halted. She was forced to become an R.N. That R.N. supported her until she finally married some years later, after the war, which a home economics course would not have done. Then in the 1960s, her husband died, leaving her with 3 boys to support. Again, the R.N. supported her and the boys.

Although a homemaker myself, desiring for my daughters to also be full-time homemakers, I encouraged both of them to go to college and prepare for careers that met the two requirements above. I encourage this young woman to do the same.

Magnolia Tea said...

Mrs T., I discovered your blog today much to my delight. You are to be commended for taking the time to share your wisdom in a time when it is sorely needed. Thank you for raising a sound, refreshing voice to strengthen those who are already stayers-at-home and give food-for-thought to those willing to consider a fulfilling life in the home. Have a wonderful day!

Gothelittle Rose said...

God will turn anything in your life into a blessing. It could be that the college and job experience may equip her for something down the road when she *is* married with children.

Thanks to my college education, I have been able to make extra money in my own home at times by tutoring people in mathematics or fixing their computers.

Katie B. of HousewifeHowTos.com said...

You have a timeless, gracious way of writing, Anna, and this advice was so wise.

Zachery Hynes said...

I completely agree that life does take very unexpected turns, and that getting where you want to be is often a strange and convoluted path. That's the beauty of living! In addition to using a college degree to support oneself or to use in the home someday, I think university education is great for more than just being able to get a job above minimum wage. University/college is a great opportunity to expand the mind, challenge the way you think, explore subjects and meet people you wouldn't otherwise have met, and to help you form good work habits. Sure, those experiences will be helpful when/if you become a SAHW, but they also help you as a person to become a better person. Who doesn't want that? It may help to try and look at every obstacle/turn in the path as an opportunity to become a more rounded person, to become more compassionate, hardworking, and knowledgable about the world we live in :)

Anonymous said...

My mother required me to attend university as well... go the cheapest route possible to avoid debt, but better yet, move out and work on your own. NO amount of feminist or even parental approval is worth the mental and emotional hell that college is for a home-oriented young woman. The only possible exception would be if you attended a religious university, debt free, with the purpose of finding a husband.

Miriam said...

Oh Anna Dear,

you spoke to me.

Thank You!

Anonymous said...

The ever-wise Anne Shirley looked at her bump in the road in this way, "When I left Queen's my future seemed to stretch out before me like a straight road. I thought I could see along it for many a milestone. Now there is a bend in it. I don't know what lies around the bend, but I'm going to believe that the best does. It has a fascination of its own, that bend, Marilla."

I am quite a home-focused woman but I had a wonderful college experience. It can happen.