Saturday, December 3, 2011

Love what you do

"Love what you do." The phrase jumped out at me during this week's discussion at the high school history co-op. (Well, it's "moral philosophy" and not just history, but that's a topic for another day.)

The phrase had made me stop short while listening to Dr. George Grant's lecture on guilds in the Middle Ages, but I'd been busy with something-or-other and didn't really process the thought. I'm often folding laundry or picking up while we're listening to lectures, and the girls are scribbling (or typing) notes, and we don't always pause the lecture to discuss a point.

But here we were in class, and the students were engaged in a lively discussion, along with a couple of the dads who'd come to class to facilitate and guide the discussion time. Love what you do.

All of a sudden, it hit me. The state of our home is a testimony to how much I love (or don't love) what I do.

Don't get me wrong. I say I love what I do. I do love it; I'm privileged to be able to stay at home, to raise my own children rather than turning them over to professional strangers (or strange professionals? ...tongue in cheek; please, hold the rotten tomatoes), to homeschool, with all its many advantages. (And that's a topic for another whole post, or series of posts...)

But I don't do like I love it.

My mom was "stuck" at home. She hated being a homemaker. She was meant for better things. Higher things. She raised her daughters to be professionals. We'd have careers, and we'd make enough money to be able to afford someone else to take care of our homes and our children.

Even though I've chosen home, I'm still following her example, in attitude at least. (Let me just say in her defense that the house I grew up in was well-kept. Not spotless, but the kitchen floor was washed every day, just for one example, and there were never piles of clutter and stuff in the main living areas of the house, and she was always after me to clean my room.)

Love what you do. That's a thought worth pondering, a motto worth adopting. If I were a mantra-chanting type, I think it would make a good one. I have been saying it over to myself periodically through the day, to remind myself where I've chosen my priorities to lie. It's tough to dig out from a lifetime of bad habits. But I think I've found a handle to grab onto.

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