Monday, April 5, 2010

Silence is Golden

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I got to church a little early last Sunday, and I noticed something. It was loud. The service hadn’t begun, but I was sitting in the sanctuary, seeking to prepare myself for worship. But there was so much talking going on around me—not the quiet tones I recall from my childhood, but loud, conversational chatting. This wasn’t the first time I’d seen this kind of thing; I’ve been to many, many churches, and I’ve noticed that the ‘holy silence’ I remember from my childhood has all but disappeared.

And it isn’t just in church, either. Silence has left our lives almost completely. Remember when libraries were so quiet that you could hear someone breathing two stacks over? We fill all of our waking hours with noise—music, talk, what we sometimes call background noise. It’s almost as though we’re afraid of the quiet.

As people, and especially, I think, as moms, we need some silent space. From the time we wake up in the morning until we go to bed at night, we’re constantly moving, interacting and resolving. If we don’t have that little bit of time when no one is talking, we just might lose it.

I think most mothers would agree with this, but the big question is, how do we find that quiet space?

For some people, getting up in the morning before the rest of the family is up and moving makes all the difference. It can give them the strength and humor to get through the day. For others of us, we’re not morning people. The idea of waking up early is kind of painful. There is of course the option of staying up late—getting everyone to bed and then finding that elusive peace and quiet. The downside there is that often by the time everyone falls asleep, we moms are ready for bed, too.

For homeschooling mothers, the options are fewer. We don’t have the school hours during which our children might be away from home, so we have to work just a little harder to carve out that time. Creativity is key! If you need a last minute item for dinner, why not run out yourself once your husband gets home? When you’re in the car, don’t turn on the radio or make phone calls; simple savor the peace. Or try to combine one-on-one time with a child who needs a ride to a lesson or play date, if someone else is at home to watch other kids, you can get in some uninterrupted chat time with the one who rides along, and then steal your own quiet on the way home or during the lesson.

If you can’t find your own silence on a regular basis, you need to take a few hours over the weekend. In the very worst case, you might savor the peace while you wash dishes or vacuum. Turn off the television, the radio and the MP3. Don’t make that phone call. Instead, take the opportunity to listen to your own thoughts. . .daydream just a little. . .and enjoy the moment.

Tawdra Kandle is stay-at-home, homeschooling mom of four children who range in age from 9 years to almost 21 years. She and her husband of over 22 years live in central Florida, where he is in seminary. Tawdra spends most of her precious free time writing and reading, and she loves to travel. She is also a resident writer for Taking Time for Mommy. View more of her Articles HERE

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Aphrodite's Mortal Friend (ME) on Mon Apr 05, 01:15:00 PM 2010 said...

I couldn't agree more with needing some quiet space- I was in the car with my 3 year old for about 15 minutes and must have heard "Mommy" about 50 times- love him to death, but GEESH! I'm following you now- cute site- hope you can stop by place when you have the time!

Small Burst on Mon Apr 05, 02:33:00 PM 2010 said...

Some good advise. So hard to find peace and quiet lately.

Mom of Many on Mon Apr 05, 10:19:00 PM 2010 said...

So true. I'm one of the ones that gets up before the rest of the family to have my "quiet time". Thanks for stopping by my place today!

Sarah on Tue Apr 06, 10:36:00 AM 2010 said...

I feel like I am constantly looking for silence! Sometimes, when the baby is napping, I manage to achieve some! Thanks for stopping by today. Great article!

Crocheted Little Things on Tue Apr 06, 09:46:00 PM 2010 said...

So true!! gosh I really can relate. I do have my silent time in the morning when they all leave, but i find myself turning up TV and music and then asking myself why I do that!
Thanks for the advice, I'm gonna try to listen to "myself" in the silence a bit more....who know, maybe deep inside I'm even interesting LOL

bigguysmama on Thu Apr 08, 11:44:00 PM 2010 said...

I'm a night owl so staying up late is my thing. I'm a p/t SAHM of school age kids so thankfully have a good amount of "alone" time, but it's not really ever silent. I seem to freeze when it's too quiet. Reading your post made me realize how much I miss silence!

~Mimi from the MBC Round Up

Anonymous said...

So true! I usually get an hour of peace at night.


Silence is Golden

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