Friday, October 02, 2015

Sometimes I Get Nice Letters

Nordic Summer Evening by Sven Richard Bergh, Sweden, 1858-1919

Before you read the letter, I want to say something about this painting and the reasons I like it.  It appeals to me that the figures appear to be husband and wife.  The man is so masculine in his appearance and posture, in contrast to the woman. 

 As you have read here on this blog I like to paint figures more than anything,  and I enjoy seeing how artists of the Victorian era paint light on folds of drapey ladies dresses. I haven't had time to concentrate on painting but I hope very soon to share a couple more paintings with you here.  I love the stillness of this picture and the repore between the two people as they enjoy the same scene and same moment, each still in their own way, and with their own thoughts. If I were to buy a picture from this is the one I would get!

And now on to this nice letter I received, for which I have permission to share:

Dear Lady Lydia,

You haven’t heard from me before since I only recently started to read portions of your site and never commented either. (As it is geared toward a female audience, I rather not comment on things I can’t have an educated opinion about, anyway.)

I went to public school for 13 years (4 years primary school + 9 years of high school - I am 20 now) and everything I’ve learned during this period totally contradicts the teachings of the bible or perhaps traditional conservatism in general. I literally witnessed a female politics teacher tell the girls of my high school class (2/3 of the whole class (!)) to 'go into the work force to take away the jobs of the boys'. Family values were virtually non-existent. I never quite thought that it was right, but there was no real alternative offered to me value-wise.

 I improved my English-skills over the past few years and now I fortunately am in the position to use a huge variety of mostly American internet resources about such topics, including yours. 

We were 'educated' to have a slight disdain for these 'lazy housewives'. These 'stupid women' who don’t want to 'use their own brain', who are as weak as to let their husband rule over them, they don’t have a place our this society… And people who have more than 2 kids are to be called crazy anyway… It’s a nightmare that generations of children and young adults are exposed to this sort of liberal propaganda. And it continues in the workplace as well: I just recently started an apprenticeship (2 days a week in school, 3 days working at the company) at an IT-company and a female coworker was mocking a woman she saw outside the window. That woman apparently gave birth to a child a few months ago and still had something left from her 'pregnant belly'. My coworker said that this woman is too lazy to exercise to lose weight. I was appalled by this statement and said to her that there are more important things in life than just 'being in shape', like having a family and to have precious children.

 It saddens me deeply that our society became so hostile against traditional families/roles or children in general. I sometimes have the feeling that I was born in the wrong century, but I hope that doesn’t sound too much like self-pity. It’s just really frustrating that no-matter who I talk to, everyone seems to to share the same liberal opinion and is appalled by Christian/conservative values, no matter how softly I approach these topics. 

People act like homeschooling is the worst thing that could happen to a child, in fact, it is illegal in Germany which is a huge issue for me. The job I will work once my apprenticeship is over isn’t a bad one or unskilled in any regard (+ it is decently paid for afterwards), yet I am apparently unable to provide for my own for the next 3 years, let alone for a wife and children. That’s because our system is designed to require both parents to work. Rent is terribly expensive in most areas and you are better off living on welfare (all inclusive) than to do an apprenticeship, as far as I understand.

Reading resources such as yours benefits me a lot in my opinion. It helps me to undo the liberal brainwashing that I’ve been exposed to way too long.

I know that I could make it much easier for myself by living just like everyone else, that is, having  girlfriends over the course of the next few years and eventually marrying someone who is willing to work and put the child into kindergarten and whatnot (would be rather easy to find a person like that as well). I want something different for myself, I want to 'make a difference' in my own life. 

I don’t just want to talk about 'family values' like all the German 'conservatives' do, I want to put them to practice at some point in my life. If people say that it’s impossible to survive on a single income because of the feminists, why should I conform to the feminist society by not living the way I would want to live? I don’t want to give in and I don’t want my future children to give in either. I want them to think for themselves and to voice their opinion if needed.

Anyway, hope that my text made sense and you keep on blogging!

Kind regards from Germany & God bless

Mr. A.

As Mr. A. Is in  his twenties, I am including this poem for him.  It has such power in it, that it sounds like a marching band, and more young men will march to its message! What you practice in your youth, and what you accomplish in yourself will be the foundation for success over troubles in your older age.

I will include this poem by Edgar A. Guest, an English man who came to America and wrote poems to encourage the American "can-do" spirit  during  the depression and War.

On Quitting

How much grit do you think you've got?
Can you quit a thing that you like a lot?
You may talk of pluck; it's an easy word,
And where'er you go it is often heard;
But can you tell to a jot or guess.

Just how much courage you now possess?
You may stand to trouble and keep your grin,
But have you tackled self-discipline?
Have you ever issued commands to you
To quit the things that you like to do,
And then, when tempted and sorely swayed,
Those rigid orders have you obeyed?

Don't boast of your grit till you've tried it out,
Nor prate to men of your courage stout,
For it's easy enough to retain a grin
In the face of a fight there's a chance to win,
But the sort of grit that is good to own
Is the stuff you need when you're all alone.

How much grit do you think you've got?
Can you turn from joys that you like a lot?
Have you ever tested yourself to know
How far with yourself your will can go?
If you want to know if you have grit,
Just pick out a joy that you like, and quit.

It's bully sport and it's open fight;
It will keep you busy both day and night;
For the toughest kind of a game you'll find
Is to make your body obey your mind.
And you never will know what is meant by grit
Unless there's something you've tried to quit. 

I will  add more of my thoughts to this post in a few hours.


Lydia said...

Josiah Baptista has left a new comment on your post "Sometimes I Get Nice Letters":

I loved this poem, Lydia, and have shared it around my little circle. I so need to apply the principles within it! Thank you for your faithfulness to encourage and admonish......

Posted by Josiah Baptista to Home Living at 9:49 AM

Lydia said...

The Retro Homemaker has left a new comment on your post "True Nobility":

Well sometimes you can get a reduction in rent. The last place we lived in, our landlord reduced the rent by $75/month in exchange of cleaning the stairs and taking out the garbage and recycling of the building. I've always been home in our marriage except for a couple of pt gigs, and we've always paid our bills in time.

Lilac Cottage Homestead said...

Thank you for sharing this letter and the poem!! I'm so glad I live here in the States! AT least we are still for now to homeschool are children, and live the way we want to. God bless


Laura Jeanne said...

Mr. A, if you have seen this post and are reading the comments, I'd like to tell you that you are not alone, and that it is the same everywhere. In Canada, thank God, we can home school our children, but the job market is in a similar state to Germany. Employers were quick to notice that virtually no one supports a family on one income any more, and they adjusted wages accordingly. Where I live some families do choose to have the wife stay at home, as we do, but it is very difficult and we do without a great deal. Most people would probably say we are quite poor. But I don't mind because I get to raise my children myself.

The cost of living increases steadily year by year, but in many occupations wages are actually less than they were 20 years ago. So it's hard to get by on one income - but not impossible. You need to make it a priority, and be willing to make sacrifices. But it's not as bad as you might think, because a busy housewife can save a lot of money through cooking, baking, sewing, etc. And anyhow, the sacrifice is worth it.

Don't give up Mr. A, you will find a lady who would like to share the kind of life you desire. Deep in every woman's heart she wants to keep a home and raise her children, whether she knows it or not.

ladypinktulip said...

I enjoyed this post. I agree with Laura Jeanne, you can save a lot of money by
being homemaker. You are not paying taxes, not using a lot of fuel in the car. You have time to economize. I use a salvage grocery store in my town run by a beautiful Mennonite family. I get groceries at a deep discount. I got perfectly good honey crisp apples 6/$1. Green Peppers are 5/$1. I have the time to search out frugal living options. Love Kelly

Shani said...

Dear Mr. A.,

Your letter touched this mother's heart, as I have a 21-year-old son who is struggling to find full-time employment here in the USA that allows him to follow his religious beliefs and set up his household for a future family. We are a homeschooling, one-income family in Illinois, and while the freedom to home educate our children has never been taken for granted by us, we do wish that our religious freedoms were more respected. When my son attended his first semester of our local college, one of his professors told the class that a fellow professor of his said that his first goal as a university professor was to wipe out everything that his students' parents had taught them and to lay the foundation of liberalism and borderline socialism. Until we realize that it is rotten at the very core of our global society and say "No More!" to the established parties, we will continue to suffer and daily lose more of our freedoms.

If you are ever in central Illinois, Mr. A., you are welcome in our home. Thank you for speaking up and educating us as well as supporting our chosen biblical paths. May God bless you as you endeavour to live your life as He calls you to.

Kind Regards,
Mrs. S. Skutt

Mrs. Cote said...

I would recommend to Mr A that he put his focus on asking God to lead him finding a church home that is in line with a biblical view of masculinity and femininity. Unfortunately, many churches are teaching the same thinking he is struggling against. He is most likely to find a spouse In a biblical church that will want the same life he is looking for, to be his helpmeet and not feel it's beneath her to support him but rather that it is a blessing for them both.

Homeschool on the Croft said...

Mr A's letter really touched me. How little we know of the struggles people may be having. How many men here in Europe are feeling the same way (we are blessed in the UK to have many freedoms that mainland Europe do not have - it was our worldview that was transported to the USA and gave you these freedoms too). But I do fear that the UK is heading in that backward direction, and how many of our freedoms our children will have, we do not know.

May God continue to teach Mr A in his soul, and may He lead and guide him so he can fulfil his heart's desire in a God honouring way.
Anne x