Friday, June 5, 2009

On being June Cleaver

A few months ago I sent out a (late) birth announcement sharing the (old) news of Roger joining our family. Since I would be sending it out to a bunch of relatives and old friends that I don't have much communication with, I thought it would be nice to include a little update letter.

After re-reading a large paragraph about what I was up to I looked up at Taylor. "Honey. Listen to this--cooking, baking, sewing, gardening...Yuck. I sound so June Cleaver." His quick reply: "Well, Anne. You are June Cleaver."

And he was right. And that was OK.

It's funny because every time I come to my blog I see the Thoreau quote and think "This is the life I imagined, so why do I fight it so hard?" I think probably because the world today belittles the June Cleavers. So we find ourselves saying things like "I'm just a mom." How do we let ourselves do that?!

Taylor and I have traditional roles. Not as traditional as some, but still. He works hard all day for me, so I want to work hard all day for him. And for the most part that means I take care of the home--the food, the laundry, the bills, the bed-making, etc. It may not always be this way. Some day I may teach again (I hope). Some day I may get my masters' degree (I hope). But right now I am learning a whole new skill set. The skill set that contains organizing and decorating and budgeting and canning and sewing and, above all else, nurturing.

I try not to forget that it is a blessing that we can live comfortably without me needing to work outside the home. (And I say party on to working moms. I hope this isn't coming across as anti-working mom or anti-people who don't sew or make strawberry jam.) I still miss getting up and putting on one of my teacher skirts and feeling important as I walk through the doors of a school. But I chose this life right now. And I am happy to be engaged in this mission and learning this new skill set.

So bring it on. Call me June.

(P.S. Maybe I should change my header to read "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Stop fighting the life you've imagined.")


liz said...

You are way more June than me, with all of that vacuuming in high heels and all. She would never have stayed in her PJs all day, nor gone to the grocery store with no make-up on, as I do all the time -- I'm maybe more like "Rosanne".

Here's how we are different than June. We choose to be home. Women of that generation did so by default. We are lucky to have the choice. And, because we have a choice, I think we feel a little obligated (pressured?) to do it better. Also, I don't think calling ourselves "June Cleaver" really honors what we do. Just keep calling yourself Anne with an E -- Anne Shirley was a mother too, and with way more depth than June Cleaver.

families are forever said...

Keep enjoying the moments!

Jody Zimmer said...

i feel like the male version of june cleaver. just the other day i was planting flower in pots for my patio. what 23 year old single male does that.....

ps. i'm blogging again. check out my sweet new look emily hooked me up with.

Barb @ getupandplay said...

I needed to read this today as I'm learning to be a SAHM...