(SNN) - The other day while on lunch break, a group of women were having a discussion on what it would be like if they didn't have to work outside the home. One of the women said, “My house would be clean all the time and my yard would be immaculate, and I wouldn't be so tired all the time.” Another chimed in, “Yes, and I could spend more time with my kids.”
Probably the most important role of influence in our society was the, “stay at home mother”. I say "was," because society has all but removed that role from women. Nowadays, in order for a family to make ends meet both the mother and the father have to work outside the home. With many families, even with both parents working, the income earned only covers the cost of utilities, rent and food.
The question here is: Is the role of the stay at home mom a “job”?
By definition, a "job" is a regular repetitive activity performed in exchange for payment. Aquiring the "job" begins when we become an employee, or starting a business. If a person is trained for a certain type of job, they may have a profession. The series of jobs a person holds in their life is their career.
So in effect the answer to the question can be a qualified “yes.” It certainly is a job, if not a career.
In more recent times, it has been suggested that being a mom is not a “job” because it does not fit into the mold society has formed in past times. To better understand this, one only has to peer into a day of the stay-at-home mother.
A job outside the home can end at any time. However, the “job” of being a mother never ends. She probably has been up numerous times during the night with small children; If she has older children, she will be up early in the morning preparing lunches, getting them dressed and preparing breakfast for them and her husband, the other child. With the husband off to work, she may have to drive the kids to school. That means getting all the children packed up in the minivan.
Depending on her schedule, she will have additional responsibilities. She takes stock of the necessities, and then it's off to the supermarket or corner stores. Being frugal, she will search several stores to get the best prices. With the smaller child in tow, she will micro-manage the needs of the child, her husband, the store staff, and the gas station attendant; all while loading her van with goods. By this time, the children are getting restless and with junior tugging on her pant legs for “the wants” the family budget is considered; which is usually followed by blood curdling screams, the rapid butt squat, while all the time doing her best not to draw the attention of the overly concerned rubbernecker. The humiliation will continue and probably escalate down every isle until she gets to the check out counter. All the while thinking, “I hope the cashier is really fast so I can get the hell out of here.”
Once home, our mother unloads the groceries and deals with the blubbering unhappy children; she is only four hours into her shift. By this time, it's lunch and the little ones are hungry. If she is lucky, maybe she can put them down for a nap. If you think her day is over, think again.
So is the role of mom a job in the traditional sense of the word?
The real answer is no. If it were just a "job" the only real reason to be a mom would be to receive a pay cheque. However, mothers are so much more. They are the foundation of society; they have a high calling. A calling to teach, nurture and strengthen our families, culture and ultimately our nation.
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