A few months ago, I lamented about how I was forced to become a housewife due to a layoff and no freelance prospects on the horizon. Mr. Rocque was fine with my situation at the time, but I was not. Working and financially contributing to my household is important to me; plus, being a housewife without any children seems pointless. I was stuck in a new city without work or familiar faces, and I freaked out.
I was depressed about it for most of the summer. Then September came, and something shifted. By the end of that month, I had joined a gym with classes that kept me stimulated and busy, and developed a better schedule for working on the novel that I will one day get published—when I finally finish it. I also decided to start blogging again and working toward making that a serious focus like it once used to be, as a way to turn a profit. In other words, I stopped dwelling on what I wanted my situation to be and focused on passions that get neglected when I’m working.
By October, I was freelancing again, and now I have a “permalance” gig that keeps my schedule full. I’m grateful for the opportunity, but I also miss the freedom that I was getting used to. In retrospect, I realize how silly I was for freaking out about the housewife situation when I wasn’t really struggling.
The good news is that I’ve learned some valuable lessons. They may sound cliché to some, but I need to keep reminding myself to relax and to stop being negative. Here are three major lessons I took away from being a housewife for a few months.
1. Look for the Good
As a cynic, I often focus on what I don’t have, and how “bad” certain situations are. I tormented myself into depression and started seeking out professional help. But once I lightened up, I felt less sad, less angry, and more able to accomplish anything I wanted to, which made me a happier person.
2. Be Patient
Patience is something I have always struggled with. I hate when I don’t seem to be making the career strides I feel I should. Despite several ups and downs in my industry, one thing I’ve learned is that I make progress when I’m supposed to. Looking back, every job I’ve ever had ended when it was supposed to, began when it was supposed to, and opportunities that fell through ended up being situations where I would have been miserable anyway. Logically, this is obvious, but putting it into practice is hard.
3. Let It Be
I can’t always control the outcome of a situation, but if I make the best of my time, then happiness will follow. Again, this probably sounds redundant, but when someone is as impatient as I can be, it’s enlightening to look back at what a mess I was. Moving forward, I hope I have an easier time recognizing what might be a blessing in disguise.
Mr. and Mrs. Rocque are the couple formerly known as Anslem Samuel and Starrene Rhett, New York-based journalists who found love in between bylines. Follow the newlyweds’ musings of a marriage in progress here, on Twitter and via their joint blog.