The housewife has always been among the unappreciated lot. Her unflagging devotion to her husband, children and grandchildren has always been taken for granted. She slaves all day as wife, mother, nanny, cook and housekeeper without any thoughts of rewards. Her only satisfaction lies in the harmony that her hardwork creates in the family.
Her main duty lies in creating a comfortable environment so that the breadwinner can come home from work to relax. She becomes the sympathetic listener of all his problems at the office. She dusts, vacuums and sweeps all day. Her hobbies normally include knitting, sewing and flower making for the purpose of creating a more delightful home. She mends his favorite shirt time and time again without grudging. Her only gratification comes from those casual compliments she receives for the delicious dishes she serves which involve so much preparation and work.
Little children are quite lost without their dear mummies. The mother nurses the tiny, helpless infant. She cares for, feeds, washes and cloths the baby. She gets up several times in the middle of the night just so that her baby is soothed and comfortable, rocking and singing to her baby the old, lovely lullabies.
The mother never forgets birthdays and always manages to whip up a cake for that special day. She remembers our first words, looks out for our first front tooth. She is always there to wipe our tears after we toddle, tumble and fall.
She is always there to teach us our numbers and alphabet. She works and wears herself out to prepare us for our first day at school. She runs out of the house at the last minute to hand to us our forgotten homework book we have left behind. She always manages to stand just outside the school gate with an umbrella so that we do not get soaked in the rain.
Her sharp eyes always watch for the first signs of cold. She waits over her children night and day worried and anxious as they go through their share of flu, measles, mumps and chicken pox. She coddles her poor sick children. Then when we are well again, she scolds us sharply for not finishing our vegetables.
She administers the timely slaps on the hand every time we get into those mischievous pranks. She angrily sends the whole lot to bed without any supper. Then she gets up in the middle of the night to pull over us our blankets and stroke our hair reassuringly.
She continues to remain her daughter’s best friend, her son’s best confidant. She nags at us with her old fashioned values and chides us for being stubborn. But she is always there when things go wrong to lend a shoulder for us to cry on.
Her grandchildren look to her as a marvelous “sugar-mummy” who spoils them with home-made toys, sweets, ice-cream and jellies. She has an infinite store of old, fascinating stories to keep us bewitched for hours. She has a marvelous knack for providing delightful old fashioned remedies to cold, cuts or broken toys.
There is indeed no tribute which is fitting to the housewife’s simple, selfless devotion to her family.