Posted by: eileenandrory | June 13, 2009

Lessons in Life from the Breadmaker

Well, I thought I had it all going on.  By the time it came for my son to go to Montessori on Thursday, I had put the dinner on in the crockpot, done two loads of washing, put one in the drier (naughty I know), made a start on changing our bed, got the kids organised and loaded and unloaded the dishwasher (yes more tutting).  Anyway, I was Organized.  Yes, with a capital ‘O’.  Ok, so I wasn’t so organised as to have my make up done, but I had had a shower, which is more than can be said for some mornings, and I was on my way.  On the make up topic – I can almost guarantee that any woman doing her makeup in the car is a Mum.  It’s the only time she has to do it uninterrupted 🙂

So, the day was going smoothly.  I dropped my son off at his Montessori preschool and headed to the library with Carys.  We spent a pleasant morning selecting books and DVDs and then wandered over the small wooden bridge at the library while discussing whether there were trolls living under the bridge.  ‘No Mummy, just grass’, I said maybe they are on the other side ‘No Mummy, more grass’.  When I suggested that the troll might be under the bridge her eyes widened and she attempted to look underneath without falling in.  ‘Must be sleeping’ was her decision.  

We then spent some more time walking over the next bridge looking at the ducks.  I explained there were Mummy ducks and Daddy ducks.  She, of course, wanted to know where the ‘Carys duck’ was.  She also said, in a plaintive voice, that ‘Big duck missing Mummy’.   Took me a while to work out that she meant that my cull of the bath toys had been a traumatic experience.  Apparently she loved the ‘big duck’ despite the fact it had rust stains all over it and was probably home to colony of evil bacteria. Anyway, we spent a delightful time conversing about ducks, and the pukekos who were wandering about.  

By the time I got back home and we had read several of the books the breadmaker had finished working and was beeping merrily in the kitchen.  I paused to stop the beeping and get the bread out.  I glanced at the breadmaker before grabbing my oven gloves and noticed that I could not see a risen loaf in it.  Hmmm, I thought to myself, must be a small loaf.  Turns out I really had to peer into the machine, and there it was, a small windowless brick building.

In my super Organised state I had forgotten the yeast.  Now I have a lot to say about multi-tasking, I live off it, I could not cope without it.  But I have to admit, this time, I had been defeated.  I had not just been multi-tasking, I had been doing ‘Too Much’.  In my effort to be Super Mum I had failed to ‘rise’.  And the breadmaker had more lessons in store for me.  I wanted to get another loaf on as soon as possible as we were a bit low on bread.  However the breadmaker was not going to fit into my schedule, rather it wanted time to cool down before it was ready for another loaf.  I would have to wait for an hour before putting another loaf in.  

It occurred to me that I had wondered what would happen to a loaf without yeast.  This was the result.  It also occurred to me that something was telling me to slow down and not try and achieve so much in one day.  Well, maybe I won’t take too much heed of that lesson 🙂 perhaps I should, but I don’t think I would be the same person if I didn’t try to cram so much into one day.  Then it struck me that this is what life is like without purpose, without drive, without the need to keep working, improving oneself.  What if you never found what made you tick?  What if you didn’t have a purpose, a goal.  What if your life was akin to a small windowless brick building because you forgot to add the yeast.  God, I couldn’t think of anything worse.  

I once thought of myself as a circling cat, you know, when a cat walks round and round in circles trying to find the perfect position to curl up in.  I felt that I had not found that niche.  Well, maybe I was more a small windowless brick building.  Unable to see out, bound by weight, tied down.  I do feel amazingly free now.  Able to live a life full of purpose.  I think I have found the yeast, other people have helped me to find it.  I have woken up to the power of a growing community, people working together to find solutions, not in the same way, rather each person weaving different strands into the same fabric.  

Our community now has the capacity to become global.  I think of the wonderful women that I know, each making a difference in their own community, each weaving a different strand, yet each of us working together to a common goal of a better community.  One might be saving animals, another might be inspiring other women to be leaders, another helping community groups get the finds they need to survive and another making beautiful things.  Each of these women is strong and each have found their purpose.  And you know what, they have risen to the challenge, they glow with it and they inspire me.  

Don’t forget to add the yeast, life is too short.


E xx. 



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