Monday, January 22, 2018

Hearts

I am just back from a funeral.  In fact, I sang a Leonard Cohen song at the funeral.  And I agree with my pastor, who said some time ago that it's important to go to funerals to step back from our busyness and look at the witness of our brother or sister who died and ask ourselves if we are truly focused on what's important.

Here on the blog, I am writing about the mundane, over and over and over again. You'll see that I put hearts on Phoebe's jeans just like I did four years ago for her big sister.

People are not talking about the mundane at a funeral; they are talking about more unique acts in peoples' lives, and yet we must eat, wear clothing, and be sheltered in hopefully clean houses. Somebody is working behind the scenes.


In this season in my life, I am deep in the mundane work behind the scenes.  I'm sure it's holy work, it's mostly loving work (sometimes I hate it), and I know it's only for a season and then my children will be out from under my wing.  Will I be ready to fly up high again and get some glory?  Well, I don't know. 

In the meantime, this discipline of blogging is going to help me step back and reflect, to exchange ideas and encouragement with you, dear readers.  Perhaps you've noticed that my posts the last few months are bare-bones and heavy on the mundane details.  I wondered, in fact, if I should stop blogging.  But I think.  The funeral today broke my heart a little, and I am back with a softer heart and a willingness to keep at it, the mundane, the endless food, laundry, vacuuming, tidying, the chaos.  Onward!

16 comments:

kyleann33 said...

First, I'm sorry for your loss, I'm sure the song you sang at the funeral was beautiful! And I wanted to send you this quote, which I have hanging in my kitchen (where I spend endless amounts of time.) “The ordinary acts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest.” ~Thomas Moore I agree, the work of a homemaker can be tiring & monotonous, but it is holy and important! You are a wonderful homemaker, and I'm glad you continue to blog and share a glimpse of your life.

Nancy said...

I appreciate your heartfelt comments. I enjoy all your posts even though I have never commented before. My younger sister unexpectedly passed away this past November 4 days shy of her 60th birthday. Her passing has reminded me that each moment of each day is a precious gift that I need to treasure.

Judith Lehman said...

I read your blog specifically for the mundane. It is very comforting. I was similarly comforted by reading The Quotidian Mysteries. I'm glad people out there are attending to details. It may be that doing so helps us also find and do the things we are good at.

Lana said...

I am sorry for your loss as well. I agree with your pastor. Often with the elderly we do not know their stories and I am sorry that I only learned them after they died. What a rich life so many of them have led and we did not even bother to know.

As a 57 year old Mom of five grown kids now caring for a husband with a brain injury who can no longer work I have to say that the mundane does not go away with the kids growing up. Somehow I thought it would too but the work is still there and I am the only one doing it now with much older legs and body. I am not sure there is really an answer to how to make life other than mundane. I feel like I just go around and around in circles here, too. I think the real answer is to serve others which takes the focus off ourselves. Those are the days that we feel the happiest here. I always enjoy whatever you post though so please keep on posting!

We have been brought up short this weekend by a friend being robbed and shot while delivering pizzas Saturday night. By God's grace he is okay and will recover but since one bullet hit his lip and teeth one can only assume that those teens who are responsible meant to shoot him in the head. What a waste of two teens future as they are now charged with attempted murder.

e said...

I'm sorry for the loss of someone you cared about. It's always hard. You must have a beautiful voice and a constitution of steel to be able to sing at a funeral. I would be crying throughout.

As the mother of a 33 year old, I can tell you that the mundane changes. There are days when I wish I could turn back the hands of time and spend a day with my little girl. Really, I'd just like to spend a day with her now! She's busy working and living her mundane life... not enough time for her old mum!

I really enjoy your blog and I hope you keep posting. The mundane is all of our lives. But, amazingly, someone else's mundane is interesting. We don't read here for drama! Your posts are a slice of life, maybe one like our own, maybe different, but full of normalcy and immediacy. I certainly enjoy reading. Sending you love and a gentle hug.

sk said...

Another sublime post.

Becky said...

The days are long, but the years are short.

The mundane that is your everyday may seem rather boring, but it's just a phase, soon to change. My one and only is 16, so I'm starting to get a bit sentimental about how the clock is ticking until she flies the coop and then what shall my mundane look like? I already talk to the dog way too much....

I am sorry for your loss. Life is short and while it might seem that bigger actions stand out, there is much to be said for the mundane. In the end, I think our children will remember us just as much for the mundane - the hearts on jeans - as they will the big stuff.

Susan said...

I wanted to add my condolences to the others, as well as feedback that I thoroughly enjoy your writing and glimpses at life. I've kept a very sporadic journal for years and was re-reading entries recently. I was taken aback by all the details I had forgotten, and how hard some things were (toddlers, travelling spouse, work, etc.). Your life, insights and perspective are both fascinating and tremendously helpful to me. :)
Susan

Tammy said...

I'm sorry for your loss.

I enjoy the mundane. Well, I don't enjoy it but I find enjoyment in it. Most of the time. ;-)

A book you might enjoy (I have!) is Keeping House: the Litany of Everyday Life by Margaret Kim Peterson. It's out of print buy you can buy used copies. The author points to the spiritual even in the mundane aspects of daily living.

Lisa said...

So many moving and meaningful comments above! For me, I am glad you're not going to quit here, Margo. xo

jenny_o said...

I truly believe that one of the most important things we can do in life is to care for the young, the old, and the infirm. People are important. How we make them feel is important. And for the young, how we help them become adults is important. The hardest and yet most rewarding thing I've done in my life was to stay home and raise our children. It can be a grind . . . but it can be sublime, too.

I hope you continue to blog, Margo. I always read and enjoy, even if I have missed commenting on some posts lately (our internet has been giving us problems). Your themes of homemaking, raising children, creative frugality, and sewing are dear to my heart. That being said, you are the only one who knows the level of importance of blogging to you. It takes energy to put posts together, especially with photos. You may find you need that energy for another purpose, and that's okay too.

Jennie C. said...

I've been thinking about stepping away from blogging, too. Don't know if it's worth it anymore. Too many voices drowning us quieter people out. Why should anybody read me?

Polly said...

I am so sorry for your loss.

(Also, am I the only one who is extremely curious as to which Leonard Cohen song you sang?)

Mundane: I'm not sure I'd classify the domestic life as mundane. I had to ruminate on this and even look up the definition to really puzzle it out--dull, earthly (not spiritual?). Perhaps it's just an individual perspective thing, but domestic life doesn't seem mundane--it seems like the root of everything else, highly spiritual, and rarely dull.

But all that aside, I kind of think that the mark of a life well-lived is not really the big stories or achievements, it is that whatever was done was done with a loving heart. I have known--we all have, I'm sure--accomplished people who were downright awful in their personal lives, destructive and difficult. A lady in our church, well into our 80s, raised a gaggle of children, sews little things for my little girl, has a heart of gold....an uneducated mountain woman. Never achieved anything by worldly standards. But at her funeral there will be dozens of descendants who rise up and call her blessed......because she has lived her life with love and selflessness and a sense of humor and delight. That's kind of what I'm aiming for, too!

Funerals do give us much to think about. I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. And I am sure that you're doing a good work in this world in your own life, as humble as the work is during this season of life. Sometimes the most humble work is the work that blesses the world the most.

Margo said...

Polly, I love that you are splitting semantic hairs with me!! Perhaps mundane was not the right word. . . and I do agree with you about what constitutes a beautiful, worthy life. . .
My friend asked me, as he was getting more and more ill, to sing "if it be your will" by Leonard Cohen.

Polly said...

A beautiful, heartbreaking song....what a sweet friend you are, Margo.

I didn't meant to split hairs in a bad way! ;) Let's all point the finger at the lawyer within and tell her to take a rest.... she does think too much about words and their meanings, I'm sure. (Because what else does one thing about while washing the dishes?!! ;)) In any case, I think you are wise to reflect, and also wise to invest in the quotidian bits of life that make a family whole and healthy.

BLD in MT said...

Bless your caring, nurturing, kind, creative, thrifty, generous heart. Life is mostly these sort of mundane details, but what a special privilege they are at the same time. I'm glad you're planning to continue sharing these small, humble moments with us. I learn much from you, find comfort in sharing our mutual interests, and am often inspired by you to try new things--or try them again, like knitting socks.

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