What Is Really Important In Life? March 15

When Life is Stripped Down to The Basics

One afternoon before Easter, I was ironing cotton dresses and shirts for church the next day. Six year old Claire watched for a while and then pointed to the iron and asked,

“What is that mummy?”

I laughed because I realized that this little girl had never seen me iron; I usually used the clothes dryer as my wrinkle smoother when I wasn’t looking for perfection but rather efficiency. Actually it was not just the iron that seldom received attention as I mothered a large family, something that I considered essential was eliminated from my life with the birth of every child.

Painting portraits went with my first-born. Other births gave the boot to crafts, dusting, bread making, interesting meals and laundry folding ( each child dressed out of their own personal laundry basket). As every mother knows, a newborn takes at least eight hours a day to nurse, burp, rock and comfort, bath, change clothes and diapers( at least ten times a day), and to wash diapers, clothes, receiving blankets, sheets and baby blankets as well as your clothes which tend to get covered in vomit, and other nasty surprises.


laura&liam

The lack of sleep leads to a rather narrow existence where the best days are when you can sneak in a nap or shower and dress before noon. Oh, those were the days when life was reduced to the basics.

Guess what?


Ann Marshall pastel & paper collage

Those basics were actually miraculous when I relaxed and allowed myself to live in the moment, enjoying my newborn rather than bemoaning all the important activities that I couldn’t seem to even start. The very fact that everything that my little one required to grow and thrive was inexpensive and near at hand was amazing. My baby didn’t need a lot of money spent on him, he simply needed arms to hold him, mother’s milk to drink and warm clothes and blankets.

 

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