Being pregnant always gets me going when it comes to matters of marriage, femininity, homemaking, and the likes. I have recently found a charming blog that captures a kind of innocence that I wish I had. The blogger”s posts on feminine dress, homemaking, parenting, and church life seem to be coming from some place within her that is truly genuine and beautiful. Too many times I have read things that seem to be gadget oriented, as if something from without can create something beautiful within. This sweet blog is different. I tire of ideological living; if I do a,b,c it will produce e,f,g. However, I truly love being a woman, and without becoming fake or legalistic, I have always tried to explore the makings and disciplines of beautiful womanhood.
Girly stuff has not always come natural to me. When I was a young girl my boy cousins teased and called me Randy, because, I suspect, I could beat most of them in an arm wrestling match. Those days were short lived, and as I grew I realized that being a tomboy was not something I would like to continue into adulthood. So, the quest for beauty and love and romance began, and then I had four daughters. I am amazed at how feminine they all are, especially because I have never really viewed myself as a particularly girly girl. In fact, my husband’s friends are all jealous of him because I love me some football on Sunday afternoons, I love to work hard and get my hands dirty, and one of my favorite date nights is going out for wings and beer. True, I think one of the reasons my husband was so attracted to me was because I am a little boyish, but in a girly kind of way. Does that make since? Here in Texas I think women have a knack for being boyish in a girly way.
This week I have been thinking about my relationship with my husband and the way I get on with my children, and how that relates to feminine virtues. My main purpose or job is being a wife and mother, and this Lent I have tried to examine the areas where I could improve upon my vocation. A few things have come up: I am idle, I complain, and I struggle with boredom, all of which greatly hinder my job as a wife and mother.
For the next few weeks I have decided to be industrious, to work at being content with my situation, and to rekindle creativity. Here are a few focus areas all inspired by that sweet little blog I mentioned before:
- Waking early
- Being faithful to my daily readings and prayers
- Making sure my husband’s practical needs are met (lunch packed, work clothes ironed, cook a small breakfast before work)
- Getting my grocery budget under some control and making frugal choices when it comes to food
- Resuming my skin, hair, and nail care regimes
- Cleaning out excess to prepare for a yard sale and to donate (starting with clothes bins in the shop)
- Take walks or swim every weekday
- Examine my wardrobe and dress with less (quality over quantity)
- Be patient with my kiddos as I still struggle with acute nausea and fatigue
- Rekindle a womanly atmosphere of creativity in my home with small things like scented candles, fresh picked wild flowers, etc.
- Reaffirm my love and affection with clean crisp sheets, soft music, warm dinners at the table, a smile, a pleasant tone in my voice, lots of hugs, and whatever creative ideas come to me.
Update: How do I feel womanly when all womanly pursuits come to a screeching halt? Explore the wonder of a round belly. Enjoy a baby kicking and moving inside me. Take in the joy of watching my body provide for another living thing. Pregnancy is the one truly exclusive womanly expression. Every bullet point above could be done by a man. However, only the woman can bear a child.