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Archive for October, 2015

If you look at the date of my last post, it’s been a few months since I’ve posted a blog. Not that the world can’t continue without the musings of Jessica Schaub (there are far too many opinions on the web anyway), but the lack of blog posting reflects a reality common among all homeschooling mothers: We are too busy to do what we want.

When I read that statement over, I cringe. It sounds harsh. Selfish. Whiney. I can be all those things, but I don’t mean that only homeschooling mothers are busy, just that I’m a busy homeschooling mom who feels the pinch of helping other people at the expense of my own hobbies and passions. I also don’t intend that statement to make mothers sound stuck in that rut. If I know anything to be true, it’s that mothers need other mothers as friends, confidants, and prayer partners. No woman can be a mother alone and those who are not mothers, try as they might, can’t understand the full scope of what it means. Even within mothers, there is just a vast scope of experiences: terminally ill children, learning disabilities, autism, bullying, divorce, and mental illness.

Motherhood is not a stagnant vocation. It ebbs and flows with the needs of others. There are meals to plan, shoes to tie, sleep to lose. How do those great moms do it? How do they just make it to the end of the day without copious amounts of coffee, wine or chocolate? (or all three?) My answer is not a full answer, but it does feel like a good start.

Rivers.

Yep. Rivers.

The image of a river has come to my attention several times. From bible verses to inspirational quotes on Pinterest, the analogies I can draw from the picture of a river are nearly endless.

I was recently discussing parenting and motherhood this with my husband and how that determines where we are in life, not just our skill as a parent. The more I thought about it, the more meaningful the analogy of the river of motherhood became.

Are you the water in the river? Do you go with the flow, riding out every rush, every stagnant corner, following the crowd to whatever destination is at the end?

 

Or are you the river bank, watching the action from the (supposedly) safe sideline? Are you a muddy bank, steep in your convictions to not become a part of the rushing waters? Watch out for mudslides.

 

Are you that giant boulder planted firmly in the center of the river, stubbornly resisting change and forcing everything that comes near you to get out of the way?

 

Are you the tree on the edge of the river gripping the bank tightly as to not fall in, but gaining the nourishing waters from the current?

 

Are the fallen tree that landed in the river and is now collecting debris?

 

Are you a slow, muddy river whose surface is difficult to see through? Are you a crystal-clear stream with light trickling noises as your water slides over a pebble-bed?

 

Are you a white-rapids river, daring rafters and kayaks to survive?

 

Are you a tributary river? A Delta? An Amazon?

 

Are you the Nile and you flood the surrounding area with life-sustaining nutrients?

 

I do not believe anyone can be stuck as one type of river. As we grow, we move from stagnant waters to rapids, from the watchful tree to the fallen debris-collecting corpse of wood. For today, however, I will be a river of change, moving toward a specific place. As Steven Covey says, “Begin with the end in mind.” While true rivers happen as a result of weather and land formations, I will begin today with a sunny disposition and the goal of moving mountains. I will be the river that charges toward the valley, picking up nutrients in the soil, carving the landscape, creating beautiful music as I determinedly move forward.

Yesterday I may have been a puddle, a stagnant collection of water left from a downpour, which will, in a few months, be frozen solid. (I live in Michigan).

Last week I had a day of responding to the world like a slow, mildew river. After a torrent of raining prayer, I was refreshed and filled with new energy.

Tomorrow? Perhaps I will be like a waterfall that washes away all the clutter in my home.

Yes. That sounds perfect!

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