Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Imperturbability

"An ideal homemaker exercises patience, understanding, and imperturbability unless controlled anger and reasonable discipline are justified. She will do her best to take those bad days when everything seems to go wrong in her stride, realizing that we need some valleys in order to appreciate the mountains."

To be imperturbable is to be incapable of being agitated. It means to remain calm and controlled, especially in an emergency or under the pressure of serious disturbances or disappointments. This is something I strive for everyday. It is hard. Some days I feel like I am forever cleaning up spilled milk. But, as I have learned, a homemaker must make the best of every situation. She must learn to adjust and take things in stride. I need to be prepared for the fact that things won't ever go smoothly. It will always take me too long to get out of the house and into the car. There will always be a load of laundry that needs to be done, a diaper that needs changing, or a mess to clean. This is the lot that I have chosen for myself, and despite its difficulty, I wouldn't rather be doing anything else.

When I first got the book "The Art of Homemaking," I bought it as a joke. But the more I read, the more I realize that being a good homemaker takes practice. The ideas in this book from 1963 work today, but I am afraid that they aren't taught now as they should be. They are overlooked (and this is coming from someone who majored in Home and Family in college!). When I started this blog I wanted it to be dedicated to making myself a better homemaker. It is important to me because I think it is the most important job a woman can have. One of my greatest blessings is that I get to stay home and be a mother and homemaker. I have never wanted to do anything else. Because I have chosen this life for myself, I think imperturbability is one of the most important qualities a mother can have. To smile at a child who knows he has done a wrong is a hard thing sometimes, but it can make such a difference. Harold B. Lee said, "There is so much harshness in the world. Don't let your children hear any of it from you."

And here I will stop because I feel like this is turning into a Sacrament Meeting talk.

10 comments:

  1. awesome steph. couldn't agree more. i admire you and leslie and katie and ginger and mom and grammy more than i can say. honestly - the selflessness of being a mother blows me away. i have no idea how you guys do it! i stand in awe of you, for real. i have no idea if i'll ever be ready to do what you do. one of my fave professors, valerie hudson, is always asking why there is no statue dedicated to all the women who have given birth and been mothers (especially those who have died in childbirth), while there are thousands dedicated to soldiers who die at war. why are men's sacrifices always privileged in our society? reproductive labor (daily tasks almost universally relegated to women like laundry, cooking, cleaning etc.) is entirely overlooked and taken for granted.

    so basically, you mothers rule. :)

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  3. Interesting that you would blog this today of all days. Today being the day that Cohen didn't sleep longer than 30 minutes at a time, wouldn't eat longer than 30 seconds at a time, and cried more than 30 minutes going to sleep at bed time. Not that I thought myself to be imperturbable by any means, but he's usually so easy that I didn't realize how far I have to go.... So I'll keep practicing. :)

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  4. That is an awesome quote, Steph. I'm putting it on my fridge. And I have always admired your calmness and level-headedness when you're with your kids. You seem to be on your way to your goal of imperturbability. You never seem put out by your yummy kids, and that is something I will always love about you.

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  5. I'll have Leslie print a copy out for my fridge, too while she is at it - such a good reminder for me, especially with the ups and downs of potty training Jayden - it is seriously so hard sometimes - I need to really remember to be the soft place for my kids to land, rather than another harsh edge, you know? Thanks for the awesome reminder!

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  6. grammy8:25 AM

    Just wish more women felt as you and Leslie, Katy, and Ginger do. The world would be a much better place and our children would have good foundations. All of my grandchildren are so fortunate to be able to stay home and be good mommies because their husbands(my other grandchildren) are dedicted to taking care of their families. I am truly blessed by all of you!
    Love and Hugs

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  7. What a great post! I find I lack in many qualities that I strive to improve. I will join you in your quest to become imperturbable.

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  8. Thank you! That is just what I needed on a day when I had to carry a crying Mia through Target and wait in the longest line ever! I was almost in tears by the time I made it to the car. I am also going to print out the quote so I can be a better homemaker! Thanks for the inspiration.

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  9. You mothers all have my admiration. I have begun a teaching career this week and though motherhood is still my ultimate goal, apparently God does not think I am ready, so I will continue to strive to achieve those qualities that will prepare me for it.

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  10. Anonymous10:50 AM

    I say briefly: Best! Useful information. Good job guys.
    »

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