Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Being Content At Home

Things need to slow down a bit for me, because I am not getting enough done at home. Right now in my life, there seems to be something needing to be done outside the home much more than I like.
When the children were all home, I went out maybe once a week and the rest of the time I was home with them, teaching them, cleaning house, cooking, baking, sewing, reading, praying and having fun. But now it seems my life has become more hectic. I like home. I like working on projects at home and keeping up with my housework and chores.
The only time I didn't like staying at home was when we lived in Southern California and I hated it there. It was such a departure from my dreams of country living and everyone we knew was on the chase for more of this and more of that, only thing they never seemed to realize they all worked so hard, they never got to enjoy any of it. I felt so out of place there. So I would take the girls, get in the car and head off to shop. As if shopping would chase away that discontentment. New things do make you feel better for a little while, then they become just another "thing" in your house.
I see lots of that same mentality in so many of the young mothers these days, this discontentment at home. This inability to be content with staying at home and seeing the job of raising a family as the most precious job on earth, that has no do-overs. Each moment should be so carefully spent instructing and giving wings to the children. I loved playing with our children, not all the time as they need to learn creativity on their own, but how wonderful it was to take them on little walks, showing them the marvels of creation and creating in their hearts a love for nature. And some of the ones that are home a lot are on the computer more than with their families and that is so sad. We have only one shot at raising each child. Each moment is there for only that exact second that it exists. I think God will hold us accountable for how we spend our time with our children. If a life of going here and there in the car was the best circumstances for a child, then would not have God waited until now to have His son born into humanity ?
And as for homemaking, there was always such joy in trying a new recipe, being creative in the kitchen and not getting into a rut of cooking the same things over and over.
What a sense of accomplishment in sewing new curtains for a room and having them look cheerful and sunny, or to make a special afghan or quilt for a child that they will treasure and hold dear to them and be able to show their children and grandchildren. To create for our children a love of home, of loving the smell of freshly baked bread and cookies cooling on the counter. So much better than the smell of the mall or of some restaurants cooking.
There is not a day that goes by when I am at the computer that I don't thank God that He waited until my children were grown for the internet to be available. I know the computer would have been a terrible distraction for me, calling me to abandon my job as homemaker to be on line. It would have been a struggle for me I know. I give the computer more time than I should, and my house shows it !
I feel that even now, with my children all grown and married, that home should be that same way for Emery and I. A place of contentment, not just of a place to store more things I buy.
This morning I have sat silently, admiring the way the sunshine comes in the windows and enjoyed the music of the birds outside the window. That is so much better to me than getting in the car and going from store to store.
Discontentment has many faces I think and for some, one of the first signs that we are not content is when we keep running here and there after a new thrill or another new thing to buy. Avoiding home for some new pleasure. Its not always the case, but so many times it is. We are a nation on the go, yet we are not a happy content people. Being stressed out is normal these days, but there is in reality, nothing normal about being stressed out.
I am going to commit to be home a lot more because to be honest, I miss it when I am away from it, even if for only a few hours. Home is where my heart is and I like it that way.


cherylhotton said...

I agree completely with this post Patty , we are away from home 2 months at a time because of work and I can't wait to get back . If a lot of young families could read and appreciate your words of wisdom they would be a lot happier and more content . A very timely post !

Beth said...

Yes, yes, yes.

My husband is an over the road truck driver and is gone from home a lot. He misses it terribly so when he's home, he's HOME. I try to get all of my running around done during the days he's gone so we can enjoy each other and our home on the days he's here. The days that I'm running here and there, paying bills, buying groceries, returning library books, doing the banking, I am only wanting to be back in my home, amongst my plain and simple treasures and the ones I love the most.

Deanna said...

It seems our thoughts have been mirroring one another's. We leave Thursday for 11 days in New Orleans but I've been thinking about some changes I want to make when we return. Less computer time is one of those changes.

Teri said...

This is a timely message for me, Patty. I've found myself hollering orders and responses to my kids - hollering so they can hear me in the other room where the 4 of them were, while I was in my room on the computer. That has been really nagging at me, as has the growing disarray. I've been thinking of really limiting my time on the computer. As I said, your message is timely.

Thank you!

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