A friend recently forwarded an email to me titled "The Invisible Mother," a short essay comparing the tireless and often thankless job of a mother to the builders of Europe's great cathedrals. Both give their whole lives for a work they will never see finished, both make sacrifices and expect no credit, and both are fueled in their passion by the faith that the eyes of God see every detail. The writer of the essay was inspired by the thought that our endless efforts in motherhood, invisible as they may seem, are worth it and can make an enriching life.
For many of us, the way we choose to hold our invisibility at bay is by creating something tangible. For me, my days often end with knitting - my love of fiber and the need to do something relaxing end up producing something I can hold and look at. Nobody will know how many times I swept under the high chair that day, or how many toys I picked up, or how many times I tried to coax a "please" or "more" or "sorry" out of my 5 year old. But a darling, handmade infant hat? That you can see.
I start new projects every day, and my 10 year old does the same. In this process of creating (and yes, often not finishing our projects!) we connect with each other and a bigger picture of ourselves in the process. My plan for this blog is to share the projects that excite me and bring some accessible proof of my existence in this invisible world of mothering!
So, this blog is dedicated to the mothers out there whose days are filled with the minutia of tasks that build our children and our families. I often tell people that I haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up. But for now, I am the builder of a great cathedral. With every shoelace tied, lunch packed, and forehead kissed, I build.
And I can hardly wait to create something new...
Sunday, May 1, 2011
The bag is drying! I've got a box inside (covered with plastic) to help keep the shape while it dries. Once that is done, I will punch holes to weave the long handle cord through. Then I attach the flowers. Or flower. They turned out bigger than I thought, and 3 might overwhelm the bag. What do you think? Once the handles are on it will be easier to envision, methinks.
In the meantime, I've got the second stripe well underway for my own bag and am excited to perhaps get that felted on Tuesday while Brynn's at school.
The girls and I went flower shopping before dinner last night, and picked out flowers to plant in our pots on the back deck as well as a couple of window boxes I will hang from the deck edge where we can see them from the kitchen table. My plan was to get those planted this afternoon, but it's cloudy and cold out. We'll see. In the meantime, Rowan has decided to start a "stepping stone" project from a kit she got as a gift awhile ago. We laid everything out and mixed the concrete for the stone. Now it's drying, and later today we can paint and decorate it.
After her school field trip to the hospital last week, we've been playing a lot of "doctor" at our house, and she was THRILLED when we opened the stone kit and there was a face mask inside that she can use with her doctor kit! She had constructed one for herself out of paper and yarn yesterday, but as you can imagine it didn't quite hold up in surgery.
For those who don't celebrate May Day, it's a tradition that's been in my family since my parents were kids. On the 1st of May, we would make little baskets, usually from construction paper, and fill them with wildflowers, candy, and other small surprises. We would sneak them to our friend's doorsteps, ring the doorbell, and run for our lives! If our friends caught us, they could give us a kiss. (I don't think I was ever caught.) I left little baskets for my girls on the front steps this morning, and we are expecting another to arrive any minute from a friend we are doing an exchange with. Rowan is quite anxious about it! We dropped ours off across town earlier this morning, and hope it brought excitement and joy to our friend. :) I wish our whole neighborhood participated, like when I was a kid, but oh well. Happy May Day, everyone!