C.S. Lewis once said, “The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only - and that is to support the ultimate career.” A career is a profession for which one trains, and which is undertaken as a permanent calling (merriam-webster.com, 2023). Thus, if a homemaker is one who manages a household as a spouse or parent (merriamwebster.com, 2023), then motherhood is a calling. It is a calling that requires the full engagement of a woman's heart, body, and soul.
Some insist that a career requires an academic degree or a high level of education or training. Others contend that the countless hours a mother puts into the home make her an expert in her field regardless of her education. Nevertheless, there is a tremendous amount of regard for a woman who raises healthy and wellrounded children to become active members of society. When a mother takes her calling seriously, the outcome of it will reflect in the life of her home and children.
Research shows that stay-at-home mothers have a positive impact on the growth and development of their children. These children have been found to have a higher academic performance level due to the parent having time to homeschool or to be extremely involved in their education. (verywellfamily.com, 2022). The benefits of having a stay-at-home mother reach far beyond academics and merge into the child’s social, mental, and emotional well-being. Children who have a stay-at-home parent have more sleep, family time, social support, lower stress levels, fewer behavior problems, and their parents have decreased child expenses (indeed.com, 2023).
According to the California Department of Education, brain research indicates that birth to age three are the most important years in a child’s life (cde.ca.gov, 2022). The Children’s Bureau states that the most critical stages of development are from birth to five years (all4kids.org, 2023). Pamela Li, the founder of Parenting for Brain, explains that the formative years, a time between 0- 8 years of age, are when brain and neurobiological development are the fastest after birth. In essence, whatever happens to children during this time will affect their physical and mental development, and their success in life. (parentingforbrain.com, 2022). These are some of the reasons many mothers see it necessary to be at home and be the strongest influence in their child’s life.
Mothers are not only known to have eyes in the back of their heads, but as a Jewish proverb says, “A mother understands what a child does not say.” Perhaps this is due to the mother sharing not only DNA but also cells with her baby in utero through a process called microchimerism. The medical community defines this phenomenon as the presence of cells from one individual inside of another genetically distinct individual. Pregnancy is the main cause of natural microchimerism through transplacental bidirectional cell trafficking between mother and fetus. Furthermore, it is now known that microchimerism persists decades later in both mother and her progeny (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, 2019). This may be the reason why a mother can be so in tune with her child, thus allowing her to nurture, direct, perceive, understand, and help when needed.
The bond that exists between a mother and child goes far beyond the surface. It is embedded in the innermost being of both. The role of mother and homemaker, though often undermined and misunderstood, is one that holds value and honor. It has existed since the beginning of creation. Jobs and occupations will come and go and can replace people. But motherhood is a gift from our Creator, and a calling that has been passed down from generation to generation. It is a calling that should be met with reverence, respect, honor, unconditional love, and support.
Till next time….