Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Not-So-Desperate Housewife

So far I've been writing about writing, but that's getting boring.  Now I think I'll blog about my life.

When I was setting up this blog, I had to come up with a name.  I wanted to call it "My Life According to Me," but that clever title was already taken.  But that's really all I know anything about, and I've got to start somewhere.  I also had to choose a "screen name" or something like that.  I considered Esther Blodgett and Hildegaard Yabromowitz, but ultimately decided on Hoosier Hausfrau.  Again, someone else got there first.  So I decided to quit designing my blog and just start writing it.

I am a housewife.  There, I said it.  I stay home.  I don't participate in the "workforce."  I have a paying job, of sorts, babysitting for some neighbor children after school, but my primary job is taking care of my family and home.  And you know what?  Home is a pretty interesting place to be, and the job of housewife is more engaging than it sounds.

I find it fascinating and rather surprising that most of the interesting things that I see and hear on a given day take place within 500 feet of my house.  I mean, I watch the news, History Channel, and Discovery nature and science programs; I read a great deal and I get out of the house on a regular basis.  But when I think of amazing people, inspirational stories or humorous situations that have made an impression on me, invariably they take place right under my nose. It reminds me of how Jane Austen was said to remark that a story about 6 to 8 families in a village or neighborhood had all the components she needed for novel.   Or words to that effect.

I have neighbors who are unfailingly compassionate, extremely witty, wildly profane, puritanically demure and just plain heroic.  There are housewives who volunteer at school, church or in the community practically every hour that their children are at school.  There are husbands who work all day, then come home and jump in to help with the non-stop evening activities of their  families.  When a neighbor has surgery, other neighbors step in to cook, mow, keep the kids or pick up prescriptions.  There are doctors, nurses, teachers and public servants right around the corner from me, each contributing to the welfare of many souls.   One of my neighbors suffered an unspeakable tragedy a few years back, but slowly pulled out of a bleak depression and reconnected with her neighbors.   I have only to sit on my front porch at 5:00pm any weekday to see an amazing array of humanity pass right in front of my eyes.

After 4 years here in my neighborhood, I can honestly say I love where I live and wouldn't want to leave here.  And considering how different my current home is from the ones in which I grew up, 900 miles away, that's saying something.  When you have good neighbors, home is a great place to be.

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