The Family

The Family

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A Refreshing Perspective for Those With Little Ones

Two years ago I discovered the writings and teachings of Sally Clarkson.

I read "Educating the Whole-Hearted Child," written mainly by her husband, Clay, with contributions from Sally, as I was contemplating homeschooling. I've since re-read it and am so glad I chose this book among the myriad of information that exists on homeschooling. Their wise and practical insight and advice speak so clearly to me. It helped me affirm my choice in my own mind and heart, but let me know that there would be many challenging days along with plenty of people that would not agree and question my choice.

I've since begun reading Sally's blog, which I have listed on my blogroll on the side of this page, and am always comforted and encouraged by her truthful words on motherhood. Homeschooling parent or not, I think her advice on parenting, specifically motherhood, hits the mark every time.

Now Sally, and a fellow blogger named Sarah Mae, have written a book called "Desperate: Hope for the Mom that Needs to Breathe."

The title sounds extreme, but reading this book is like sitting around sharing your deepest thoughts with your closest girlfriends. It's not a list of formulas. It's not two women complaining. It isn't preachy. It's the thoughts, mind and heart of one younger woman and one older woman having conversations about the hard yet deeply fulfilling and important days of mothering well.

As Sally has said so many times, wise women learn from other wise women. With that in mind, I'm going to share a few of the many, many, many, many passages I highlighted while reading this wonderful book. I hope those of you that have little ones find time to read it!

-"However, when I look back on the grand scheme of things, I can see clearly that motherhood is a process, a journey. It was fraught with so many moments and days of failure, anger, stress and exhaustion. Little by little, I have learned grace, joy, patience, and hope, and slowly my soul is being shaped into His image. I wouldn't trade the journey of my ideals for any other life. But I couldn't have known any of this starting out."
-"Rules, laws and boxes tend to kill the soul when it comes to expectations of motherhood. Freedom leads you to more contentment and joy."
These next two passages I love, because in Sally's graceful way, she expresses what I've never been able to put into words about why I like to travel so much and why I think it's important and necessary to take my children along for the ride.

-"It was a profound realization when I understood that I could become an artist with my very life. I was responsible to do what I needed to do to last on this long road of motherhood. There was some point in my life when I accepted that no one else was going to take responsibility for me, and if I didn't take care of myself, my soul would die a slow death by exhaustion, boredom, loneliness and mediocrity."
-"Some moms have become so frenetic about being a mom that they have forgotten how to be a human being. To be clear, I am not talking about sacrificing my children on the altar of my pleasure. But it seems to me that God has given all of us generous leeway in conducting our own symphony of life, and in cultivating our family culture according to our own strengths and weaknesses."
Did I mention that the foreward of this book is written by Ann Voskamp, another of those wise women whose words and perspective are dead on.

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