I grew up in a different time, when it was still rather popular to have a stay at home mom waiting for you after school, a dad who worked and came home at the end of the day to a hot supper, and after-school specials on the tv a few times a week.
Now, we see many single parent homes, lots of working moms regardless of single or married, many combined families, and seldom a family meal.
We women are told we have to do it all. We have to be the working mom, the provider for the family outside the home as well as keep the home fantastically clean, go to every sporting event a child has available to them, do activities away from the house, etc. We're told we can be everything a man is and then some.
It's not true.
We don't have to be everything. We're not designed to be everything to everyone. That's not how God made us women.
God created us to compliment a man...to be a helpmeet...not competition. We are designed to do the things in areas men are not strong in. It's not popular today to even think that, but in God's Word, it's still the same as it was when written originally. God's Word is true regardless of what our society says.
Proverbs 31 is the ideal woman. Whether she ever existed or not, I have no idea. I know I'm not up to par with everything in Proverbs 31. In the chapter, it does not have her competing with her husband for finances, for status, and so on. It doesn't have her racing around outside the home to fulfill some belief that she had to do it all or she was nothing. She supported her husband, for he was known in the gates of the city. She created a business of her own with her own goods, and took care of her family and any servants she had. She prepared for the upcoming seasons to make sure her family was tended to. Her status wasn't in herself though, it was something her husband achieved, with her as his supporter, cheerleader, helpmeet. SHE wasn't known in the city gates, as the businessman/city leader/etc.
We're told today we must do it all. We must have the city council seat, we must have the booming business, we must have several college degrees, we must have a full bank account, a fancy house and expensive cars. We must have the pressures of doing everything, plus taking care of a family.
We don't have to. As we grow older it is easier to see and understand, but when younger, we have all those pressures heaped on our shoulders to do it all. I remember back as an 18 year old graduating school, my dad told me to go and make as much money as I can, do it honestly, but go earn as much as possible. Now, I understand his logic. He wasn't saved. He grew up dirt poor and mostly remained that way all his life while working farms that weren't his own (usually as foreman) and raising lots of kids. He never got past 8th grade due to moving around a lot and then got drafted into WW2, continued farming and logging and never really got beyond hand to mouth income. I had that mindset too, and for a few years I worked no less than a full time job and a part time job at the same time. Some years I worked a full and 2 part time jobs. Then when I was a single mom, I had to keep that up in order to care for a special needs baby. I got as far as about sophomore year in college and am still at that stage 22 years after graduating high school.
It took having my son, missing all that time away from him when he needed me the most in the early years (didn't have a choice if I wanted to keep a roof over us and food), to realize just how much I was missing out on. The money came and went. I was busy trying to keep up that I missed out on some of his "firsts". He didn't understand why mom had to leave, he just knew mom left him for most of the day, and even at 16 he still has a hard time if I'm not home when he gets home from school for whatever reason.
Looking back, I'd change a lot. I'd not listen to that advice in working unholy hours to earn as much as possible--I'd work on learning how to take care of a home and family, to learn domestic arts and use those to earn as needed. I'd learn to grasp skills that are useful at home as well as useful to build a business if needed. I learned a lot working on the farm and taking care of aging parents and such, but not how to find joy in the duties, how to tend children, etc. That all came hands on later.
Young ladies, you don't have to go out and think you have to do it all. You don't! Read your Bibles, find your joy in the Lord first, ask HIM what you should do with your life. Seek HIS will. He will show you what He has planned for you. You won't regret listening to Him over the world. His way is way better than what the world pushes. I've learned that the hard way in years of living and doing things very much the opposite of the bible. You don't have to follow in the steps of myself and many many other women who have been there.