To illustrate, I'd like to give you a quote from Hesiod's Theogony. The passage starts with the birth of the first woman, created by Zeus, formed by Hephaestus and clothed by Athena...
From her (Athena) comes the fair sex;
yes, wicked womenfolk are her descendants.
They live among mortal men as a nagging burden
and are no good sharers of abject want, but only of wealth.
Men are like swarms of bees clinging to cave roofs
to feed drones that contribute only to malicious deeds;
the bees themselves all day long until sundown
are busy carrying and storing the white wax,
but the drones stay inside in their roofed hives
and cram their bellies full of what others harvest.
Like I said, cruel, right? It makes me look at my own role as a woman, and particularly as as stay-at-home mom. In the past this has been a touchy subject for me. Am I still contributing to society by staying at home with my kids? I'm not earning any money. I'm not adding to my resume. I get no breaks, no rewards, and sometimes it's very hard to see if I'm doing any good at all.
But that's when I have to stand back and look at the big picture.
When I got pregnant with my fourth baby, I got really sick. I couldn't do the things I always took for granted--the laundry, dishes, picking the kids up from school, making meals, taking the kids to sports or dance. That's when I realized how much I actually do. No, I don't get a paycheck, but that doesn't mean I'm worthless.
Moms--you're worth it. Every effort you make is worth it. The Greeks didn't think so, and I believe that's what perpetuated our society's view on women, a view we're still trying to make right today.
Some people ask me what I do for a living. My answer: I stay at home with my kids.
Sometimes I get "the look." That face that says, "Oh, you're just a mom. You don't really DO anything, do you?"
It breaks my heart to realize that some people think that way.
A stay-at-home mom's efforts are not be as visible as someone working in a professional career. The clean clothes, the dishes, the meals, the juggling game between sports or dance or scouts, but I've come to learn that these things are just as important as being the bread-winner. I don't have a paycheck to show for it. But I hope what my children learn from me will be of greater value than money.
Women and men are different, but they're also equal.
In my book, RAZE, I write about two sisters who have lost their mother to cancer. My lead character, May, realizes how important her mother was when she's driven to the testing point, and remembers her mother's advice. If you'd like to read about two heroines who show what it means to be strong, please purchase my novella, RAZE. It's on Amazon for only $2.99. Thank you!
I've written more about mothers than I expected. It was not something that I intentionally sat down to write about. I guess that deep down, I feel strongly about good mothers--and how vitally important they are to our society. The Greeks never realized this. It's our responsibility to set the record straight.