What is Mother Culture?
A few weeks ago Dean called me from the basement. “What is it?” I asked as I reached the bottom of the stairs.
“Look at this,” he said. He was standing in a puddle, holding a flashlight and pointing above his head to a slow-leaking flex-pipe. “I’ll call the heating guy in the morning,” he said.
Next to the puddle was a small stack of soggy boxes. We examined the state of things inside them and found that much of our stuff was ruined. Somehow I didn’t mind very much. “Now we have less stuff.” I said. Some of the contents were fine. I came across cassette tapes of talks we had delivered to homeschool conferences. The word “cassette” tells you how old they are. Two were marked Mother Culture 1999 - the year we spoke in Massachusetts and Maine. “What on earth are we going to do with these?” I said.
The man-of-the-house does not, and I emphasis “not,” like getting rid of things but he did say, “We have CDs from other conferences . . . somewhere in all this storage . . . we’ll keep those.”
“If we ever find them.” I replied. I often lament the amount of storage we have.
Why have I chosen to devote an entire hour on the subject of Mother Culture when I am asked to speak? I do it out of sympathy. It is not uncommon for a self-sacrificing mother to feel overwhelmed or live on the verge of exhaustion. Therefore, it is just as important to encourage a mother with ways she can nurture her soul, as it is to supply her with tried-and-true ideas on how to foster “The Gentle Art of Learning” in her children.
Early in my homeschooling experience I paid attention to something I found intriguing. I don’t’ remember where I read it but I jotted it down to ponder it further. It was a quote by Billy Graham. He said, “Mothers should nurture their souls so in turn they can nurture the souls of their children.” This, my friend, is what I call Mother Culture. Every homeschool is comprised of a child (or children) and a teacher. Although the focus is on the children some of what she does for her children she would do well to consider doing for herself.
How have you nurtured your soul this week?