I guess this seemed shocking to me since I've always thought of myself as a career women who is currently staying home with her children. But it's been five years. Five years of full time homemaking and mommying. I miss working, but I'm not going back. I love staying home with my babies. As hard as it is, I know this is what I need to be doing. I know this is the best thing for my family. Still, I find it overwhelming in it's monotony at times.
I've been looking for a couple new mantras to replace the negative ones I'm trying to control. I found one that I absolutely love in last season's issue of Seeing the Everyday. (A gorgeous advertisement-free magazine I think every mother should receive.) It talked about finding the poetry in the prosaic. To quote Gary Saul Morson, to focus on the prosaics is "a way of thinking about human events that focuses on the ordinary, messy, quotidian facts of daily life. In short - on the prosaic. Clocked in their very ordinariness, the prosaic events that truly shape our lives, escape our notice."
When I think of the mundane activities of my life in this way, it's as if a cool sweet breeze enters in a room of stale air. This way of life will never be easy or glamourous. But I can look at it in a way to find the beauty hidden in the most insignificant chores and actions. Folding a sheet may not be a moment of any notice, but what if I include Lydia and we shake it out together, whipping it into a frenzy. Then I take the time to show her how to make the corners match and how to keep the wrinkles away. We have created a moment together. A duty that must be done, can bring my child closer.
We need to to have bread to make our sandwiches for the day. What if I really did learn to make my own and the kids made small little loafs at the counter with me. Together we watch the bread brown and the house start to fill with that intoxicating smell. Together we rip into that warm bread and laugh as we get sticky with jam and honey. What if we did this every week? What if the smell of baking bread would always make them feel safe and loved, even when they are far from home.
I think I am afraid to lose myself in pure domesticity. But who says I can't be a strong woman and still find joy in cleaning my kitchen floor? (And I really loath cleaning my floor.)
This is my new mantra. Find The Poetry In The Prosaic. I want to find fulfillment in the books I read, the friends I make, the places I visit, and the man I love. But I also want to find it in the small area of space I take up in this world. Within these wall are the memories my family will cherish, as long as I am able to find the beauty in the daily mundanes that bless my life.