Not your average balebusta*

* Umm, roughly translated, “lady of the house”? Anyone want to jump in and help me out here?

I thought some fair warning would be in place. I would hate for anyone to confuse religious observance with piety, household organization, and general goodness. Since I haven’t been tagged by anyone yet, here’s six things it might help to know about me:

I swear. A lot. With four letter words. And although you’ll never hear me take the Big Man’s name in vain, I say a lot of other things that wouldn’t quite cut it around our shul. Given that we’re actually trying to treat our infertility now, the likelihood of those choice phrases occurring on this blog is going to increase. Consider yourself warned, or invited, if you will.

I watch television. And movies. Both in our home and with mixed audiences. Often with R ratings. And I have a wonderful 60 GB iPod with everything from Eminem to shiurim from Aish Audio. I think there is a difference between watching things and actually doing them. And I think I can choose not to do bad things.

My house is a mess. Oftentimes it doesn’t get much better in time for Shabbos or chagim. And since we have two bathrooms, B”H, mine is a disaster. It has been dubbed “my shithole” by the hubby.

I feel like an ass when I make a bracha before I eat something that isn’t good for me — which is fairly often, given that I’m overweight — and often just don’t make one. It is not something I am proud of (al cheyt), but it’s a work in progress. Actually, I’m a bit of a work in progress myself. Aren’t we all?

I’m machmir (translated: stringent?) about some of the strangest stuff. I am really careful about not mixing meat and dairy at home. We have two fridges and I’m very careful to cover our dairy stove burners before cooking meat and vice versa. I am militant about taharat hamishpocha (umm … google it … it’s too complex to go into here) and, as the hubby describes it, “openly hostile” about the suggestion that we might take a more lenient approach with shailas from time to time.

On the other hand, I’ll eat damn near anything with a hecksher, even if it’s one I’m not familiar with. And although I cover my hair, it’s anyone’s guess from day to day how much of it will actually be covered and by what — lately, I’m kind of a snood girl, but I also like scarves, baseball hats and wigs.

I am a good observant girl who does what she’s supposed to, but that doesn’t mean I always have to like it. I hate cleaning for Pesach, though I wouldn’t trade a night at the seder table for anything. And sometimes no electricity on Shabbos means I feel like I waste a whole weekend doing nothing. I’m not opening up the comments to criticism of traditional Judaism — there are places for that, this isn’t one of them — but yeah, I find some of the stuff to be a bother too.

And an honorable mention: To borrow from RenReb, a fabulous blogger that I absolutely adore (why can’t she be my reb?), although my hubby is not a rabbi, he still rocks my world.

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2 responses to “Not your average balebusta*

  1. Oh, RenReb is my hero (heroine?), too! We sound very similar, although I’m very machmir about hechshers. But, that said, I will eat out at strictly Buddhist veggie places, and I will eat sushi out at certain Japanese restaurants (we check them out to make sure they have separate prep areas for shellfish, etc., etc.). So, go figure 😉

    Welcome (most unfortunately) to the IF/J blogosphere. I’m sorry you have to be here, but glad you have a “here” to go to. B’hatzlacha in your (b”H may it be short) journey!

  2. Balebusta… it’s more than just “lady of the house”… it’s an extremely capable lady of the house. An unbelievably efficient, loving homemaker. A balebusta is devoted to creating a warm, loving Jewish home for her family. Um. I’m not sure I’m getting it.

    Trusty old dictionary.com defines it as: a capable, efficient housewife, esp. a traditional Jewish one, devoted to maintaining a well-run home.

    Anyway, I’m not the average balebusta either. Your description describes me pretty well… and I probably ought to make just such a post on my own blog.

    I swear a lot too. My dad was a submariner, what can I say? And I watch television and movies and listen to just about anything I wish to.

    I think we’re all on a path in one direction or another, so we all find ourselves at different points of the spectrum on different issues. Certainly we all have areas in which we are machmir, and areas where we are less so. there’s nothing wrong with this, but it is troubling to me in the blogosphere, because I don’t want anyone looking at me as the example of an Orthodox woman. This is why I try not to emphasize my Orthodoxy in my infertility blog. But your method is better.

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