Tuesday, May 1, 2012


This is what I wanted to be:

Matriarch of a big, happy family,
colorful, kerchiefed, round and rosy-cheeked—
who could represent me better?

I started collecting nesting dolls a long time ago. Made in Russia, their real name is Matryoshka, from a word that means Mother. They are sometimes called Babushka dolls, which I like, too, because it means Grandmother.

There are lots of different themes and designs, and I love seeing how the artists from various villages paint them so meticulously. My grandkids love taking the dolls apart to reveal smaller dolls fitting inside one another.

When my granddaughters turn eight, I give them one to keep. The big doll represents her, her mom is next, and I am after that, with generations of grandmothers and great-grandmothers, back and back and back, who all want her to be happy.

A letter is part of the gift, listing all the names and something unique about each one: Lucy loves gymnastics, Heidi loves to bake, Marty loves to write, June loved to sew, Adelila loved to cook, Emily loved her garden. I tell my eight-year-old that they were loved by these women long before they were even born. If they could, all the grandmothers would share the lessons they learned about life with their posterity. "But you have traits of each of them carried right inside your mind and heart," I say. "It's called heredity!"

Art by Kathryn Brown

I hope my little girls can someday realize the blessing of being Matryoshka and Babushka. It has become more challenging to make this choice.

Bryce Christensen said:
"Too many women have succumbed to a dangerously narrow view of womanhood, repudiating homemaking itself as an outmoded and dispensable artifact of a misguided culture."

In his article Homeless America, he states that women's traditional skills have lost their value.
"By rejecting a role differentiation between fathers and mothers, some women have lost sight of the home as an independent moral realm, building relationships and values that are different from those of the commercial realm."

(This is a great article I've referred to often on my blog. It's long, but interesting.)

Some attitudes in our society are absolutely wrong. I hope my little granddaughters will recognize the great lies listed here:
  1. Men are smarter, have all the power and are more important, so if we want to have influence in the world we should be more like them.
  2. Marriage and family are confining.
  3. Motherhood is menial and a waste of any talented woman's time.
  4. Women are perpetually frazzled and failing.
  5. A woman's value is based on her size, shape, and what she accomplishes outside the home.
--from a talk by Sheri Dew

Some truths I hope my girls will learn from the legacy of their mothers and grandmothers:
  1. By developing the God-given nature to nurture, women have a unique opportunity to change the world.
  2. The influence of a mother has no limit and no end. She can share every aspect of her education and experience in the atmosphere of love she fashions.
  3. Creating a home is a way of creating a world.
  4. Women have abilities beyond their wildest dreams to organize and create.
  5. Women are the soul of a family and a community.
It's been said that women are the survival kit of the human race. That responsibility has been handed down from generation to generation.

I think it's something inside us!

Now it's your turn~

Comment, blog, or think about these questions:
  1. What is the main responsibility of a mother?
  2. What was your decision to be a mother, or not to be a mother, based on?
  3. How do you think the role of motherhood has changed since you were a child?
  4. Is that good or bad?
  5. How do you feel about the role of motherhood personally?

Write down how you feel about the big questions for your posterity. What's written down becomes the history future generations will search for. Let your story be part of their understanding.

1 comment:

The Grandmother Here said...

Where do you find your dolls?