A few years ago, when I was in college, my mom handed me a set of three books. A trilogy. This is the link to see the books I'm talking about. The author is Beverly Lewis and she specializes in writing about the Amish, their life and faith. They are fiction but based off many true Amish beliefs as she has learned from the Amish herself. When my mom gave these to me, inside I chuckled. She wants me to read about the Amish? Are you serious? How could this be interesting to me? She told me her friend Barbara (aka Barbarazini) had let her borrow them and they were good, that I'd enjoy them. Well, I was anxious to read anything other than educational nursing books so I decided to give them a try. At least 8 years later, I am so glad that I did! I have since read many of Beverly's books... from a 5 part series to several trilogies. They are great! Not only am I suckered in to believing that I know more about the Amish than my friends, I get into these books as though the characters are real. At the end of the book, I wish I could meet them. I long to stay in their homes, to experience their singings and to help farm, can and weed. And if I'm totally honest with you, there are times that I long to become Amish.
Yeah, I know, it sounds crazy. And it is. I don't want to become Amish because I want to follow their faith. I am completely and 100% all about the man NOT being in charge in a relationship that I could never imagine having to "obey". I think their courting practices (called Rumshpringa) are a bit atypical, especially in this day & age. But there are so many things that I think are cool. Things that I'm sure they'd laugh about the "englisher" lady longing to have. They even say, (or at least Beverly portrays), that they believe many englishers (non-amish) come to their lives looking for seclusion, calm, a simpler way of life. And that is precisely what I'd like... some days.
What would it be like to wake up at 5am everyday (ask my mom, she does it all the time), start chores immediately, make a large breakfast for the men. Only to serve it and begin lunch preparations? What would it be like to have church in someones living room? To walk barefoot all summer and own no sandals? To "drive" in a buggy in the dead of winter, through the snow, with only a lap blanket and a warm brick to keep my feet from freezing? To walk everywhere I went, or ride in a buggy? To sew my own clothes, without buttons or zippers, but to use pins to hold them together? To do all those things that keep an Amish woman busy that I don't have/need to do?
I write this on my laptop, sitting on my couch, covered with my plug-in warming throw, with the television on, two children's baby monitors rustling a soft white noise in the background and my iPod next to me awaiting the next move on my many games. Seriously... all this comfort, all this convenience... and I think it would be cool to experience the Amish life. I just do. Have you ever thought that?