Look in thy glass and tell the face thou viewest
Now is the time that face should form another;
Whose fresh repair if now thou not renewest,
Thou dost beguile the world, unbless some mother.
For where is she so fair whose uneared womb
Disdains the tillage of thy husbandry?
Or who is he so fond will be the tomb
Of his self-love, to stop posterity?
Thou art thy mother’s glass and she in thee
Calls back the lovely April of her prime;
So thou through windows of thine age shalt see,
Despite of wrinkles, this thy golden time.
But if thou live, remembered not to be,
Die single and thine image dies with thee.
Shakespeare is obviously stuck on a theme for these sonnets. Last night’s sonnet was more about the benefits of having children, and the importance of ensuring that there is someone to carry on your beauty once age has taken your own away. We didn’t come up with a translation, since it’s pretty identical to the sonnet we read the night before.
However, the kids still had something to say about it:
Said the teenager: “I don’t think he’s talking as much about beauty, but I think he’s saying that this person should have babies so that his family has something to remember him by.”
Said the little: “He said the mother. It’s about love. He knows so much about love that’s why he wrote about it and put it in a book and selled it.”
Last night I asked my Facebook folk if they had any recommendations for a morning meditation to help focus and cleanse our minds, the way we are trying to clean our home to focus our summer camp planning later this week. My good friend, A, posted some great links about morning rituals, and her morning routine with her kids. She’s a great resource, because she recently started homeschooling her girls. So I decided to adopt her morning basket idea, and tweak it to my own devices.
This morning after breakfast, and once my coffee set in, we cleared out the living room, laid out a blanket, and chose a meditation from Youtube. It was an interesting one, about the fact that we exist, and that the state of “knowingness” stems from being firm in your own existence. It was hard for the little to sit still for 13 minutes, and the teenager told me he had a hard time keeping his eyes closed the whole time, but we got through it
Afterwards we read from my leather bound copy of Fairy Tales. We began with The Emperor’s New Clothes, and as we speak we are all taking some time to write about how this story applies to our lives, or just a story that relates.
For me, the meditation and the story were serendipitously linked. Being aware and confident of who you are is the only way to combat the Emperor’s New Clothes situations we are constantly besieged with on a day to day basis. What to wear, how to dress, the words we use– these can be seen as identifiers of who we are, what we know, and whether or not we are “fit” to hold the positions we have in life. As parents we can often struggle to guide our kids to think for themselves; resist peer pressure; make positive choices. How can we show them that they already know the answers? How can we teach them that within themselves they are able to find the strength to say, “But wait, he’s naked!” When the entire world around us seems to be marveling at how fine the fabric of illusions are?
I don’t have the answers, but I have my theories at least. I try to help my kids see that other people will try to define them, but the only one who knows the truth is them. I teach them that the things they are thinking and feeling are the only truths they can count on. Courage is in speaking those truths. Confidence is in knowing that speaking your own truth gives others the strength to speak their own. I’m excited to see what they’ve come up with.
If you’re interested in hearing what they’ve come up with don’t forget to follow my Tumblr where I’ll be sharing excerpts of what they’ve written. Click here to follow me on Tumblr.
As for the rest of today, we’ll be getting the house in tip top shape together, and then reflecting on how we feel once it’s over.
Check in tomorrow for Sonnet 4, and the Planning Day.