19 April 2009

A "Pair of Ducks"

We have been discussing pioneer life a lot these last few days. The curly headed one has decided she does NOT like Laura and Mary Wilder. The straight haired one has assured us all that her sister means the characters, not the real people. Regardless of how she's stating it (loudly and with great vehemence), what she really means is: "I hate it when I can't do what I want to!" We’ve been going round and round with the curly headed girl about those words. I realize she is struggling to learn exactly what a curly headed girl is, but she isn't in a vacuum. She has to learn who she is in relation to other people.

Yeah well, that's life! And unfortunately, it doesn't change when we grow up. I want so much for her to learn the importance of those things while she is young. But that is pretty unrealistic. These are lessons we don't learn once and for all. Even as adults we have to deal with others on a regular basis. If we are being honest about reality, the illusion that we can do as we want to and not have consequences lasts about as long as it takes an ostrich to pull its head out of a hole in the ground!

Sometimes we all have to do things we don’t want to. I’m not talking about keeping the house clean and making sure my kids are clothed semi-normally (moms really shouldn't be held responsible for the outfits their small children create), doing the laundry and feeding my husband. Those are the small things that must be done as if they are great and noble tasks, even when I’d rather be playing with some form of dirt. Those are just symptoms of the bigger problem...

Who are we really? Can we define ourselves apart from our interactions with others? The curly headed girl is teaching me that life is about a transfer of dependence. None of us can walk this life completely on our own strength. Trying to do so can be an experiment in misery. And since we must deal with others, it is best to deal well.

1 comment:

  1. Oh so well said. And if we can teach our children that they will never be truly independent despite what the culture today is trying to teach them there may be hope for our future. Can we teach them to appreciate community, community that both gives and needs to be given to?



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