Monday, November 12, 2007

Homesick for Home Ec

My school didn't offer a home economics course, and I had absolutely no interest in pursuing anything akin to it in university. I'm not sure if home ec wasn't an option because at that point (mid 90's) people felt that those classes were part of a greater conspiracy to keep women in the kitchen as much as it was just my school didn't have the size or funding to pull it off. I think the whole conspiracy thing may have been part of the reason I steered way clear of anything to do with home, kids, cooking, finances etc. when I was in college. I vaguely knew that Some Day I would do all that stuff, but I didn't want to study it. Why take home economics when you can learn about Ancient Greek Architecture, or navel-gaze in Beginning Acting or get 75% off lift tickets through the PE ski class, and, lest I forget, focus on my adored major which was my route for gainful employ the day after I received my diploma. No one suggested I learn anything that would have been beneficial for a stay-at-home mom, and if they had I would have laughed and then been mild to medium offended.
Fast forward a few years to the days I'm trying to get nutritious, fast and simple dinners on the table on at least a bi-weekly basis (come on people!) with enough leftovers for Ian to take to lunch on the days he needs a lunch and without busting the budget each month on groceries. Looking back I really wish that I maybe had given home ec some thought. I'm going on three years now since my working has been transferred from a windowless office to my house and it's been a little bit crazy to try to figure it all out. It definitely was not instaknowledge like I had vaguely assumed. The skills I learned in college serve little to no purpose in my new life, except as a topic of conversation. People tell me- "oh, you'll go back to it someday when your kids start school" or "think of all you learned while you were working." Don't get me wrong, I'm glad that I studied what I studied and that I worked for awhile, and I don't know if I'd do anything different if I was to do it over again, to be honest. I guess I just wonder why colleges are dumping out hundreds of thousands of grads every year who can tell you precisely what painter did what when, but blink with wide-eyed wonder if you asked them to prepare a nutritious, economical meal for four each day of the week, or run a household with confident smoothness. I guess I feel like if I had prepared myself for being a mom even a micro faction as much as I prepared myself for my career- I think it would have come in reeaaalll handy right now.


Char said...

Ha - really enjoyed reading that. I totally thought homemaking skills were something that would take me about a week to pick up....let's just say it's taking longer than expected.

mrpuente said...

In Melissa's defense, she is actually a pretty great homemaker now! Thanks Honey!

Nana said...

I'm still learning - and some of it's from Char, Linds and you Meliss!