September 13, 2011

The wife I want to be

Proverbs 31
10-31 A good woman is hard to find,

and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously
all her life long.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.
She's like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.
She's up before dawn, preparing breakfast
for her family and organizing her day.
She looks over a field and buys it,
then, with money she's put aside, plants a garden.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
She's skilled in the crafts of home and hearth,
diligent in homemaking.
She's quick to assist anyone in need,
reaches out to help the poor.
She doesn't worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
She makes her own clothing,
and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
Her husband is greatly respected
when he deliberates with the city fathers.
She designs gowns and sells them,
brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:
"Many women have done wonderful things,
but you've outclassed them all!"
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!

Wow.. did you read all that? That's a lot to live up to, right?!?

About two weeks ago, Sara Horn, who writes, My So-Called Life as a Proverbs 31 Wife, came to our kick-off day of PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel). She was an awesome speaker. She opened right up and made you feel like you've known her all your life. She is a military wife herself, and shared some of her experiences that led her to write this book. I could go on and on about her and what she said, but then this post would be much longer than it already is going to be... so let's get more to the point!

My friend Ashley, who was with me, won Sara's book and I wasted no time in demanding that she hand it over to me as soon as she was done. Mistake numero uno. Who would have guessed that she'd finish it in like 3 days? Not I. Mistake numero dos. Of course, with her raving about it, I couldn't wait to start it. And of course I'm sucked in. And now, of course, I'm on the mission to become a better wife.

I may get some rolling of the eyes with this one, but I'm going to put it all out there anyways. My blog, right?
I've been trying for two weeks now..scratch that.. I've been fighting with myself in my head for two weeks now... about how I'm going to go about this. I've been actually trying for two days. Yes, I want to be a better wife, and mother on that note. Yes, I want to make better use of my time. But how? Where am I going to find more time in the day? Where's all of that energy needed going to come from. Can I really do everything without complaining? What if he doesn't notice? I'm supposed to just keep picking up after everyone with no thanks? What if I fail?

I have a lot to work on. I need to develop A LOT more patience. My husband is a wonderful man and I love him with everything I've got, but my heavens he can infuriate me! I'm signing up to "never be spiteful and treat him generously all my life long". That, my friends, is a long time... hopefully. I'm just now developing a crafty side, but I sure am not about to be knitting and sewing. I mean.. I think I can learn to sew a button on. My husband knows how.. maybe he can teach me. "Up before down, preparing breakfast"??? Seriously? Does the coffee maker even work before dawn? " She senses the worth of her work, is in no hurry to call it quits for the day." Yes, I understand that keeping up house and home is important.. and I like to have a clean house. Clean clothes are kind of important too. As is dinner being made every night. But, no hurry to call it quits? I can't call it quits soon enough! There's more.. read it for yourself. Something like making my own clothing, my clothes always being elegant, and always saying kind things and having a smile on my face.

Gosh.. is this woman perfect, or what? Do I think I can do ALL of this? No. Not a chance. But I can be a better wife than I have been, that's for sure. I guess that's my point in all of this jumbled mess. My husband works hard for us.. for me to be able to stay home and raise our son. He's up and out the door way before the sun is even thinking about coming up. He shouldn't have to come home and do any work around the house after that (IMO). It's not JUST for him, though. He never, ever complains about anything. He thinks I'm pretty amazing just the way I am. But, it's also for me. Having my house in disarray stresses me out to.the.max. I hate to see clutter. I hate to see crap all over the place when it shouldn't be there. I hate to see laundry pile up and I hate even more so to have to do multiple loads at a time. I LOVE organization. I love to feel put together. I love to have good meals planned and cooked to feed my boys. I love to feel like I have a purpose. And for now.. this IS my purpose. To take care of my family.

So, how am I going to make this work? What is my plan?
First and foremost, I had to admit something to myself that embarrassed me. I'm pretty positive that there are a lot of others who can say the same. I had to cut out A LOT of internet time. I can be fairly certain when I say I have an addiction to the internet. To Facebook more specifically. I'm not sure why other than, on some days, it's my only form of communication with an adult. I'm sure it runs much deeper than that, though, but the why isn't important here. Maybe we can delve into that at a later time. Maybe.
I'm forcing myself to shut down the computer more often. I'm making a weekly list of things I want/need to get done and I will not go to bed before it's all done. I'm realistic. It's not like I'm not giving myself a moment to breath. I'm just more disciplined. I WILL get everything done. I'm making a very detailed planner with my friend Jaci later on this week and I'm sure that will be a big help. The main motivator will be pretty new pens.
I'm making a conscience effort to be nicer to Trey. It's not like I'm evil to him as it is, but I'm going to make an effort to bring him up more. To hold my tongue when I want to lay into him. To compliment him more. To trust his instincts more. To let him lead the way without doubting him. To stop nagging. To stop complaining when I have to put his dish in the dishwasher or his coke can in the recycling bin... again. I'm very strong willed and stubborn... so this is going to be harder for me than it sounds.
I want to be more creative with dinner plans. Try different, more nutritious meals.
I want to interactively play with my son more. I feel like I already do a good enough job with this. But, I want to better than "good enough". Now that the weather is cooling off, I want to take him outside more. I don't want to turn him down so much when he points to the door and says, "utahh" (outside). I'll go out with him more and play in rocks and dirt. Take him to the park more and for more walks. Sit and play with his new ABC puzzle. Read more.

I think that is a good starting point. Will I change overnight? No way. Will I need to call a friend to vent at times? Most definitely. Will I get the praise I'm looking for? Probably not at first. Will this improve my marriage? I'm very confident that over time, it will. I'm confident in the fact that this will pay off. That Trey will notice the effort I'm making and start trying harder himself. My main goal isn't to get anything from him in return, but it wouldn't hurt. That would just improve things even more so. But I have to start with myself.

So there you have it. A plan to improve myself and my marriage out there for the world to see. Thoughts? Ideas? Has anyone read this book? I'd love to know!


JG said...

I would like to read that when you're finished (Ashley said I could :)) I have to say, I've never considered the Proverbs 31 woman to be a checklist, more of a guideline. Does every woman need to sew her own clothes? Or should women be contributing to the household so she's not putting her family in debt buying lots of clothes? Does every woman have to sell textiles? Or can she contribute to the household budget using her specific talents, be that sewing, administration, medicine? I'd be really interested to see how the book addresses those concepts.

Just Ask Beth said...

and your husbands JOB doesn't stop when he leaves work.. He must lift you up also and be respectful of your JOB at home, which I am sure he is, but sometimes I think they think we have it easier.. I always compliment my does make a difference, but I too after 16 plus years struggle with the "little" things and BIG like letting him take care of us..I am always trying too and I need to make him the total leader.

Jessica said...

I read the book and I loved it. Like you, I am a stay at home wife. We don't have any kids yet. I spend way too much time on the internet I know. I have a big test coming up in two months. I am also writing out a detail plan of my day and sticking to it that way I can get in everything that I need to do. I will probably deep clean one room a day, keep up the laundry (because between the Army and the gym we have a lot), vacuum at least every other day because of the dog, do dishes/cook dinner, etc. etc. I am looking forward to the challenge! I hope you will keep us updated on how you are doing.

Sweet Memory Photography said...

It takes 21 days to form a habit. May I suggest that you pick one thing at a time on your list and work on that for 21 days? You are going to overwhelm yourself with a list that long!

The Mrs. said...

Hello, I just found your comment on my blog! I'm so glad you decided to post, because you were right, I had just read your blog! I don't want you to think for a second I was trying to diminish your self worth, that was not what I was getting at. I actually felt more inspired to write about that topic becuase some of the ladies in my class were having a little bit of a hard time this week, and I thought it may be encouraging to right a "its ok to be a woman in the workplace" post.

As a woman in a male dominated field you take lots of ridicule for what you are doing. (I'm sure its similar to what anybody feels when they are the minority) For instance, I was in a surgery all morning where the surgeon made "women only in the kitchen, never in the operating room jokes for 150 minutes"... I just didn't think it was appropriate to go into that much detail explaining my post, or what was inspiring me. I think what you are doing is amazing! Taking care of your family is the hardest job there is, and I hope you didn't interpret my post as disrespectful to you or your role in anyway, becaue it really is amazing. I admire you for trying to better yourself, that is one of life's hardest (lessons in my opinion).

I look foward to chatting again! Your blog always makes me think, and I love love love that! I hope you guys have a really great weekend!