May 29, 2008 was a pivotal day for me. After 35 years in the workforce, 20 of which in executive positions, I was given the boot. Some would call it downsized, others refer to layoff, and still others would say terminated. Whatever, I was fired ~ without a job ~ without an income ~ and NO prospect of finding another job in the nose dive economy of 2008.
My husband of 26 years now doesn't want me to go back to work, ever. I no longer have the daily regimen or responsibility for anyone or anything outside my home and family. I have risen, I have become a housewife at almost 60 years old! I have never cooked or cleaned my own house or for that matter. During the last years of employment I needed a personal assistant due to my traveling schedule ~ and I had a dog and cat to supervise.
I say "risen" because I have finally entered a whole new world of employment. The first day my husband went to work and left me alone in our home, I was truly at a loss as to what I was supposed to do first; where do you start with so many things and tasks staring you in the face? Clean the top of the refrigerator? Vacuum the baseboards and forgo the carpet? Clean the litter box or start dinner? I really didn't know what or how to begin.
Housewifely daily activities are now on a routine which I will not vary from. I have learned the hard way that there is a right and a wrong way to tackle a project. Yes project. Housewifely duties have become my job, it's what I do to earn my keep just as managing 200 people did in the past. I am President and CEO of our house.
Since taking over my position, I have taken to housewifery like a manager of an arts and crafts store. There is (which I now completely respect) an order of things to do to be good at this craft. Don't get me wrong, there are things like any job that I don't like to do. But for the most part, this job is a walk in the park compared to ALL past positions.
I've discovered that quite possibly I am the Queen of laundry. There are only two of us and I wash at least 10 loads of laundry a week. It's comforting to know that laundry basket is empty even if I have to wash 3 or 4 items. It's also a powerful in that I can choose what kind of wash I want, at what rate do I want my machine to spin and if I want a second rinse or soak cycle! I actually look forward to this part of my job.
The oddest thing I have learned is that bleach is my friend! Who knew that the same liquid that splashes/ruins whatever we have on at the moment can clean almost everything? My kitchen and bathroom are germ free due to the best invention ~ the spray bottle.
My attire has changed as well. I believe you should always look your best ~ so I wear very nice sweats or jeans if I'm really in a spunky mood. Shoes are another thing entirely. I have come to believe that all shoes worn outside should be removed at the door. That said, I wear the most unattractive red house shoes with two pair of socks, every day all day. Regardless of my attire these are my go to work shoes! I can't say for sure but I think my husband is oblivious of my feet.
Grooming is completely different for housewives. While I do bathe and style my hair daily, makeup is completely optional. Half of my problem is solved as I have permanent eyeliner so I typically opt not to add to it. That said, I also have no problem venturing out of the house in the same state of housewifely lack of applied makeup. Again, another perk of being a housewife.
As mentioned earlier, there are those chores that I truly dread on a daily or twice daily basis. Cleaning the litter box reigns at the top of the list. However, without this and all the daily chores I wouldn't have risen to President and CEO or our home!