No, it’s not a new home sewing machine, it is in fact a thought I’ve been playing around with. In the last hundred years women and their roles have gone through so much upheaval. Our roles in the home and the world have been changed and redefined so many times, it’s a surprise we know which way is up some times. I believe that in the generations preceding me, it was becoming almost taboo for a women not to choose to do everything (career, family, home, education) that we almost lost the art of simple domesticities, everything from the dreaded inclusive word of “crafts” (knitting, sewing, etc.) to the real art of making a meal (and with it the knowledge of how to make things that don’t arrive prepackaged).

However, recently there seems to be a resurgence in interest of these items as my generation has rediscovered the joy of cooking, baking, gardening and making things by hand. We don’t want to miss out on the memories such things create for us and those around us, we do not want to be with heirlooms or secret family recipes for the next generations or even simple traditions.

So what has been happening to combat this? People, and women in general have a new found interested in what is called “reclaiming the home”, bringing back a level of simplicity and domesticity in our crazy lives. Now, more and more, we see educated, independent women choosing a life our mothers generation might have scorned. They choose to be mothers, stay at home moms, be more active with their families and community. They seek to reclaim a bit of our lives that have lost to the busy pace of the modern world; they do not seek to find the 1950’s perfect life, but rather hope to find a little bit of balance between our dreams of the past and our visions and nightmares of the future. Women now have the opportunity and the chances to do whatever they dream, and now some standing up to say that they happily choose to do what would have been their only option years ago.

I call these people “The New Domestics” and I hope to find my way in this new idea at some point.

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For many people, the idea that I’m thinking along these lines might surprise people; after all I know I have been the one to dream of all things I was going to do and places I was going to go. For the last couple years I’ve been doing this, traveling and experiencing at the speed of light and it is overwhelming. I began to wonder what it was like to slow down and be happier with a little less rather than be a little less happy with more. I began to realize that out of my desire and drive to achieve I have lost contact with so many people, friends and family alike and could barely define myself outside of what I did for a living and I did not like this one bit.

I have always had a middle-ground theory for living, but with a little research I have found that this personal philosophy has a name and it is “Voluntary Simplicity”, it is a personal choice not to do with out, but to do with excess and to truly appreciate things that have no monetary worth; family, community and the simple joys in life. I will perhaps write more on this later, I could definitely write pages on it, but for now I leave you with a few quotes to ponder.

“The essence of voluntary simplicity is living in a way what is outwardly simple and inwardly rich.” ~Duane Elgin

“There must be more to life than having everything.”
– Maurice Sendak

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