Monday, January 6, 2014

Changing Attitudes

There are days when I get blog ideas from things that I see in the news and posts from fellow bloggers.  When it's the latter, I always give credit (no plagiarism here!) so here comes some credit:

One lady who I follow is the fabulous Erica Diamond of Women on the Fence.  If you don't already follow her, please go check her out.  I met her a couple of years ago at a tweet-up (yes, she's a Montrealer), found her charming and upbeat, and have followed her blog/Facebook/Twitter/etc. ever since.  She is a Certified Women's Life, Business and Success Coach, blogger, entrepreneur, author, speaker, has a weekly parenting segment on Global, is a brand spokesperson, is married to her best friend and is the mother of two gorgeous boys  (yes, I'm paraphrasing the "about" section of her blog with a couple of gushing additions of my own).

Erica is the first person who will stand up and fight for every woman in her quest to "get off the fence" and follow her passions no matter what they may be.  This is why the Facebook status she posted the other day left me scratching my head:

Even someone as accomplished as Erica can (even temporarily) fall into the trap of thinking that our work in the home is not as important as other goals.  Instead of leaving her first sentence to stand as it was, she qualified it with "sad, but true" as if this perhaps is not quite a worthy resolution.

To be fair, perhaps she just meant this as a funny mocking of her own household skills (I'll bet that is the case) but it still struck a chord with me anyway because of the mission that I have been on lately.  I have been trying hard lately to make my family's food (mostly) from scratch rather than buying it pre-made or doing take-out.  Of course, the holidays kind of shot that to hell but I'm getting back on the wagon now that life is returning to normal.   I have also been trying to streamline my home to make it less cluttered with useless "stuff" and acquire only the things that help me achieve this goal to make our home a more pleasant place to be.  I have been trying to take "domesticated" to heart; not always successfully but I'm a work-in-progress.  Remember my New Year's resolution to embrace my imperfection? I really don't beat myself up if I end up using a jarred pasta sauce one day rather than making it or ordering a pizza when I'm totally wiped out.

This is the message we tend to get:

You make bread for your family instead of buying it?  That's quaint.

You got that new account at work?  That's great; good for you!!

I may be exaggerating a bit but you get the idea.  Society as a whole tends to recognize and commend our accomplishments outside the home at work and in the community but wanting to make our house a "home" for our family just isn't recognized as an accomplishment.  This is a trap mind-set that we all fall into sometimes.  I'm trying very hard to move away from that.  Please don't think that I am only talking about women here; this applies just as much to men.  As a matter of fact, a father who puts a strong emphasis on domestic responsibilites tends to be ridiculed by his single friends who will be his strongest supporters if he plays a good game of hockey or gets that promotion.

Of course, those who place more value on our "outside" work will be the first ones to accuse us of being bad parents; of not "being there" and providing a good home environment for our kids if one of them does something wrong.  This is a double standard in our society that sets us up to be torn down rather than built up.  So many of us do a balancing act of career-family-self that equal support for all of these aspects of our lives would make us all healthier.  There truly needs to be a shift in attitudes here in North America to empower us to concentrate more on our homes and families than on the goals of the workplace.

I should probably leave it at that before this post becomes too ranty (yes, I make up words).

Erica, thank you for showing me enough trust to give me the green light to use your Facebook post.  You truly are an inspiration to all of us looking to "get off the fence" and do what it takes to make our lives what they were meant to be.



  1. I've always said that others need to walk a mile in my shoes otherwise MYOB. I think it's great what you're doing at home. Be yourself and know you can probably run rings around working Mom's who've never had to think about efficiency! Xx

    1. Thank Barb; I'm sure that there are plenty of other working moms who run circles around me but I'm trying ;)