As I noted elsewhere today, we have become overly fond of the idea of "enjoying" ourselves. I mentioned in another blog that my Army son and college daughter, home for Christmas, were regularly asked if they were "enjoying" the Army or college. 

I think a lot of young wives, especially, ask themselves if they are really "enjoying" being a wife. This is too bad, because it is a bad question. 

Actually, they usually are not thinking so broadly. They think about whether they "enjoy" the various things involved in being a wife. If you are a homemaker, you probably do not "enjoy" laundry and cooking and cleaning. Many wives, today, simply don't do those things as much as they ought to, because they do not enjoy them. It isn't fun to fold clothes, it is much more fun to Facebook, so clothes can wait while we Facebook. It isn't fun to prepare a meal, but it is fun to go to a restaurant, so we will eat out. The result is messy homes, wrinkled clothing, and high restaurant bills. Are you happy now?

For some reason, "being a homemaker" has come to be seen as different from a "real job." This is a shame, because the woman who stays home while her husband "goes to work" has very important work to do. She is to do laundry, to fold clothes, to care for children, to keep the house clean, to do all those little things that we know a wife is supposed to do. But those things are not fun. Facebook is fun. Telephoning friends is fun. Television is fun. 

At a "real job," of course, you could not do this. At a real job, there would be a real boss there to push you back to work. Someone would tell you to clean the laundry or wash the bathtubs or dust the dressers, but there is no one at home to do so. And, well, you live there. You do not think of it as work, just as "keeping house" and you do not really care how well you do it, because you can live happily with piles of junk everywhere. 

I think being a wife is much harder than other jobs because the temptations are so strong. There are so many things you could do other than clean, other than cook, other than work with your children, that you do not want to cook or clean or work with your children at all. You want to do what you want to do. 

The Excellent Wife, on the other hand, knows that what she does is very important. It is important that your husband not wear wrinkled clothes to work and that your children have clean clothes to play in or wear to school, so you have to do laundry and do it well. It is important that the family not spend all its money on restaurants or eat Macaroni & Cheese every night, so you have to cook. Not because you love cooking, but because it is your job. 

A person with a job does not enjoy everything about his job, either. And the only satisfaction he gets from doing his job well is a paycheck. As a wife, you will not enjoy everything you have to do, but, if you do it, you will enjoy much more than merely a paycheck. You will enjoy a clean, pleasant home. You will have children who are happy and who look well kept and clean. You will have meals to share. You will have a home that makes everyone's life more pleasant and enjoyable. 

Or you can choose to have a dump. You have the choice. People can live in a dump, but they will not enjoy living there.

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