Not Exactly the Shores of Tripoli

Jonathan finished his last exam in the middle of May, and then, in an event unprecedented since the birth of our Cheesedoodle, almost three years ago, he had three consecutive days off work that weren’t devoted to things like moving, or having a baby. On the fourth day, as he was getting ready to go to work, he said “These past three days keep making me think of the Marines slogan: ‘the hardest job you’ll ever love.’ I mean, you spend all day working at the same things and they keep needing to be done and when you go to sleep you know that they will just have to be done again in the morning. The Marines can at least shoot at or blow up their hard job.”

It was sort of affirming to have my husband, who is working full time AND doing seminary full time, compare MY job to the Marines; but it isn’t exactly accurate. Our conversation turned very quickly to women who did my job, and didn’t have the option of asking daddy to take the kids outside so she can mop the floor. Single mothers have to do all of the endless tasks every day AND they are on call 24/7. They don’t have back up. A few nights later some other mothers and I got discussing military wives who are essentially single parents during deployments and the challenges that must bring.

I hope we blessed mothers who are able to stay at home and raise our kids with supportive, loving husbands under whose leadership we can rest and grow, take more time to thank the Lord for the blessings of our job than we do complaining about the daily grind of it. This may be a tough job without a lot of affirmation or task completion, but it could be a lot harder and for a lot of women it is.  The calling of homemaker is a God honoring high calling; but we need to keep it and ourselves in perspective. We’re not exactly storming the beaches ladies, and we need to remember that.



Just found out that the “Hardest Job you’ll ever love” slogan is for the peace corp, who do not storm beaches, shoot at or blow up anything and had nothing to do with the shores of Tripoli. Oooops. If you can look past that, I stand by the rest of the post.


About Coralie

After 11 years of infertility, I am now a mother to three, a wife of a Presbyterian (ARP) preacher and a struggling homemaker. Welcome to my little corner of the net. Kick off your shoes, put your feet up and join the conversation. View all posts by Coralie

2 responses to “Not Exactly the Shores of Tripoli

  • suzanne

    AMEN! Totally agree. (And of course I can easily look past the Marines/Peace Corps flummox ;)) When Jimmy’s away for the night (or, let’s face it, is just gone to work over dinner and bedtime), I have renewed respect for parents who are doing it alone.

  • melissa

    This is so true. Brian and I have been watching a documentary series on the War in the Pacific. In the first attck on the outer ring of islands surrounding Japan, the marines had landed on the island amid terrible mortar and small arms fire, suffering huge casualties. They had spent one terrifying night under constant bonsai attack. The next morning they simply had to “secure the island, remove all enemy foxholes and pill boxes, and make the runway safe for American planes.” I looked at Brian, “That makes my to-do list seem rather simple by comparison!” I commented. We too often make our tasks huge simply by believing they are and forgetting that many people have done far more with far less.

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