Thursday, November 03, 2005

Temperance and "seasons"

I find that when I have a newborn, or during medical seasons, our systems tend to fall apart because it needs my energy to keep them going. I keep a list during those newborn days of things that I want to FIX if I had the time/energy and then try to work on one thing at a time as I feel ready to tackle them -- baby steps

Perhaps balance and consistency doesn't HAVE to be uniformity -- the Church has fasts and feasts in the context of basic Christian temperance. Perhaps we moms can steer things a bit differently in different seasons but our principles stay the same.

I struggle with temperance -- a spiritual problem that has plenty of real life ramifications. St Francis de Sales wrote something about how we can sometimes strive to be temperate in an intemperate way. Getting angry at oneself for past failings, doing an extreme makeover and then letting it lapse when the angry energy is gone. That's me!!!! Flylady talks a bit about the same thing, I believe! Some people are temperamentally cyclical. I am coming to think it is not bad in itself, because the Church provides for that variability in Her liturgical life within a context of regularity. So She (I believe) teaches us we can be cyclical within a general stable order.

So that concept about "seasons" helps me flatten out the extremes of my cycles between one thing or another, whether it be TV or sweets or the Internet! whatever's an issue around here. It also helps me moderate my "guilt meltdowns". To be honest, I still have those moments and days but they're not quite as crushing and intense and I know I can channel and control that angry energy into planned course corrections.

I think it was something Leonie said quite a long time ago that was useful for me at the time and planted the seed. I used to struggle with periodically reworking my whole homeschool and parenting method every time I read a new hsing book or parenting book. It was agonizing.

She said that she wrote down new ideas and problems and then planned term by term to incorporate the new methods, resources, and solutions.

So that helped me think about my homeschooling, parenting, spiritual endeavours as more cyclical, adapting to circumstances and "seasons", rather than as tossing out the whole thing with a horrible feeling of remorse and starting anew every time.

Anyway, that's just to share something that occurred to me the other day when I was dwelling upon something completely different . To put it another way, you can think of your basic framework as being quite consistent -- trying to provide what's best for your whole family -- and the way you do that might vary. It might temporarily go "too far" but then when you realize it, you do a course correction -- within that broad framework.

No comments: