Matters of heart 7th November 2013

Follow the dream

Dear Aunty Lisa

I was recently married to a successful man and I am currently stressed about what will become of my dreams. I desire to have a great career but soon I will be giving birth to my first child, as I am two months pregnant. My husband and I have agreed to only three kids. What worries me is that I will not be able to follow my dreams of achieving the career I love because I will be caught up in raising our kids and having to be there for my husband. My husband does not know of my worries and he assumes I am happy at home playing the perfect wife and mother to be. Should I just accept this reality to be my life? – Gladys M.

Dear Gladys M.

There is no law that commands women to abandon their dreams once married and it is very possible to pursue your career as a mother and wife. That will not make you a bad person. Follow your dreams, follow your passion and make sure you achieve what you want to without allowing your family to be your barriers. It will be sad a few years down the line when you look at your husband and kids as your jailers. You want to be able to look your daughter in the eye one day and tell her to follow her dreams, “just like I did.”

Set an example for your future family, when the going gets tough they should be able to look up to you for encouragement. Your husband may think that you like the current situation now because you have never opened up to him. I don’t know exactly why – perhaps you do not want to disappoint him? He seems to be enjoying coming home to be welcomed by his loving wife who is there for him always and you fear that he will be disappointed that you want to be more than just a housewife. I believe your man is educated, since you say he is successful. I am sure he will smile to hear you wanting to better yourself. Your husband should be your number one source of encouragement and inspiration. Make him one. Remember pregnancy is not a sickness, it is just a temporary condition and it will never stop you from doing anything your heart wants. – Aunty Lisa

Too many chores

Dear Aunty Lisa

I am worried about how my kids are overloaded with chores by my wife when they come back from school. They have no time to study and my wife insists that she is preparing them well for their future when they have their own families. I respect that, but I am worried they may fail in school. – Amos Phiri

Dear Amos Phiri

Your concern is very understandable. Your wife is correct in wanting to prepare your kids for mother or fatherhood. That is not bad at all. But as with so many things it is a question of balance – and this should not be done at the expense of education. It is better to have a teenager who does not know how to cook sadza but knows the square root of 16. Your wife is not a bad woman, she is acting in good faith, but she needs to have someone explain to her how lack of study time can affect her kids badly in their education.

She may realise the importance of education and the final examinations your kids will write, but many people fail to realise that kids are prepared for those exams years before they sit for them. It is that small homework every day, revision tests, questions they ask at home and support they get from parents that produce good results. You need to sit down and discuss this calmly with your wife. Allocate a set time for chores that leaves enough time for homework and reading. You also need to communicate with your children clearly so that they understand the benefits of both. – Aunty Lisa

Tummy problems

Dear Aunty Lisa

I am a mother of three and I don’t like the way I look. My weight is just fine. I weigh about 75kg but the tummy is getting me worried. I have tried some slimming pills but they don’t seem to work. What can I do? – Emma

Dear Emma

You are looking for the easy way of losing your baby fat – that is why you are not being successful. They sure have a point when they say no pain no gain. Nothing good comes easy; you have to work for it. Exercise combined with sensible eating is the only way you will get back into good shape. Set aside time four or five times a week to do a session of sit-ups and crunches. Go for a fast walk, making sure you hold your stomach muscles taut all the time. Slimming pills never work in the long run. They also have numerous side effects and can cause all sorts of problems. Working out helps tone your body evenly and you can target each part of the body you want, which you cannot do with artificial methods of losing weight. Push yourself and you will see some change. – Aunty Lisa

Thanks for advice

Dear Aunty Lisa

Thank you so much for your column. This is my first time writing to you and I would like to let you know that your advice to another lady some weeks ago really helped me in my marriage. My husband used to accuse me of not being welcoming to his relatives. We are seven months into our marriage and we have been living with some of his cousins. I began to be moody because I felt he never had any special time with me, I felt crowded and I began to hate being married. I was beginning to think I had made a mistake until you explained that in your column.

I showed him and it made sense to him especially when you said, “You two need your space for a while – that is the reason why newlyweds go for a honeymoon away from home. She yearns for your touch when you are back from work and she feels far apart from you that time because there is a ‘crowd’.” Now I am happy to tell you that things have changed. Eeven though we still live with his cousins he makes sure to take me out every Friday where it will be just the two of us and he is planning a get-away for us during the festive season. Thank you. – Mrs P.J

Post published in: Lifestyle

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