I recently shared a post on Facebook that proposes a fiscal value for stay-at-home mums. It suggested that they would be eligible for an income of $113,000 per annum if they were paid. It prompted me to think about what I would pay myself if we did earn a wage.
A while ago, in my house there was some tension over who earnt the almighty dollar. In particular, who put food on the table and a roof over our heads. With tenacity and my, ‘I-am-woman-hear-me-roar’ defiance, I wrote an invoice for a week’s worth of wife/mother duties. I created a business name, logo, a fake ABN and all other company related whatnot that you would see on any other invoice.
This invoice listed an itemised account of all my motherly & wifely obligations.
It included the following responsibilities – cooking, landscaping, nanny, personal shopper, cleaner, dog walker, gardener, accountancy, and so on. Each job included the hours spent on each activity and the hourly rate as set by the state’s wage policies, with GST applied individually.
So, my bill was popped into an envelope and sent on its way to my dearly beloved. I waited anxiously, laughing at the hilarity; how I was going to win the argument and clearly state not to undervalue or under-appreciate my contributions to the household.
Secretly, I was high-fiving myself – I missed my calling as a comedian, obviously!
Please don’t mistake my intentions, I am a proud wife and I am honoured that my husband is the man he is. Truth be told, my husband works his behind off to provide for his family. He works two jobs, often to the point of sheer exhaustion which can affect his delightful manner and thus, his ability to have quality time with us.
Dear hubby’s work ethic has enabled me to be a stay-at–home mother to enjoy and raise our children.
However, does that mean stay-at-home parents are of less value then their paid partner? I put in the hard yards as a mother and wife – usually around 18 hours a day. The rest I’m getting broken sleep whilst still needing to be bright and chipper for the kids and a doting, loving wife.
Having a partner show gratitude for your efforts goes a long way.
Being a mother is not necessarily hard, depending on how many children you have and their individual needs. However, I am quite often flat out from daylight to dark; running around after children like a cheetah hunting an antelope. When I do manage to fall into bed, I can’t find myself able to relax long enough to get a good night before I have to do it all over again.
Occasionally, if I’m lucky, I may be able to read one paragraph of a book, or take a bath. But, often my effort goes unnoticed by my dearly beloved, just the weary and grouchy Mum, or something not done. This is where I breathe deep and try not to implant an axe into his skull. Counting is another strategy I use in times like this, I am an expert at counting to 1o, sometimes to 300.
Being grateful costs zilch, all it takes is a few words of appreciation.
Now, back to the invoice. It arrived in the post and I placed it on the cupboard to wait for my husband to open it. Eventually, when he did read his mail, it was met with the comment “What’s this crap?”
I, meanwhile, was barely holding on to raucous laughter amidst trying to explain the intention of the invoice. As you can imagine, it wasn’t well received at all. Yet, I still feel very accomplished and victorious, as my point was received and heard.
Mums, don’t ever feel undervalued or under-appreciated. You are investing in your legacy; the future leaders and change makers of this fabulous world we live in. Every day, give thanks for the efforts your loved ones are making in and out of the home. Remember Mummas and Papas, being a stay-at-home parent rocks!
How do you like to show appreciation? Share with us below!
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