20 June 2011

Motherhood and Peace

This weekend I had to go back and reread this article. I've been feeling a little wound up, much like I did a year and a half ago. I've been trying to find a way to articulate how I've been feeling and to define why I am the kind of mother I am. Last week, all I wanted was to quiet everything -- the books and blogs I've read, the advice, the alternative ways of doing things. I kept asking myself, Why do I stay home with Lily, really? Why do I focus so much on her, often at the expense of other things I'd rather be doing? I picked up my copy of The Mission of Motherhood, read a few pages, and had to put it down. As much as I believe there are eternal consequences to my daily acts as a mother, it was starting to make me a little batty.

Adam took Lily to the lake for a day and a half, and I had the weekend to myself. After my initial excitement wore off (and it took awhile), I had some time to sort through things. The biggest reason I want to be at home with my kid is so we can have peace. I lose sight of that too often. I want my family to have a home base, a safe place where we can all rest and know that things are taken care of and where we can all be loved. I am the one who provides that for us. I am the one who sets the tone, either of peacefulness or of batty-ness. I need to keep that better in mind.

Back to the article. The last time I read it, I was deciding whether to continue teaching or to solely stay at home. I chose the latter, but eventually steered back to the former. In many ways, it seems easier in many ways to find other work that offers worldly affirmation and a distraction from the difficultly of mothering. But it's all about balance, which I struggle daily to find.

This quote struck me most this go-around:
Sustainable faith comes from having a coherent worldview, mentoring relationships and community. As I think about motherhood as a vocation from this lens, I can see where all three are essential for women—young or old—to find peace and sustainability in what is arguably a rather chaotic enterprise.
We are missing the community/mentoring aspect right now, as we try to find a church and rebuild relationships here. Having other folks to talk to, face to face, will no doubt help even things out. In the meantime, I've got to remember to relax and keep the peace.

1 comment:

Christine said...

I'm excited to read that article. Great, honest thoughts. One of the key things I took away from The Mission of Motherhood was what you articulated about how we as mothers set the tone in our home. Oh, how many times I set it to frustration, impatience, and anxiety. It's so hard to remember sometimes.