Not So Fast: On Downward Mobility and Load Limits
*UPDATE* Stacy, Commenter #1, you should comment more often! You’re the winner of Ann Kroeker’s Not So Fast, and for some reason I feel like this is extra special because Random Number Generator never seems to pick #1 . You’re going to love it! Now right away, everybody else, go buy this book. It’s a must-read.
Not So Fast—on downward mobility and load limits
“We are more than the sum total of all that we accomplish in a given day, week, year, decade or lifetime. …There’s more to life than what we do.” Ann Kroeker, Not So Fast, p. 41 (emphasis added).
Dearest Ann Kroeker, writer, sent us a copy of her new book Not So Fast—Slow Down Solutions for Frenzied Families. In the front cover, she wrote a few kind words, which is most special because Amber and I treasure front-cover sentiments above most monetary gifts. There is a sense of permanency to them. So this morning, when I found that my youngest son had taken his own writing implement and left his own front cover sentiments, which consist of numerous Pollocksonian squiggles and dots, you can imagine my immediate frustration.
But then I stopped; and I thought, “what would Ann do?”
In Not so Fast, Ann encourages us to slow the pace of daily life—to take the time orient ourselves to something less than the rat race. Starting in the first Chapter, she asks “What Are we Missing out On?” As I sat in my squat, comfortable chair reading that question in silence, the Still-Small echoed and answered, “Me.” Mere sentences later, as if in confirmation, Ann writes:
Even within the Christian subculture, families are zooming, accelerating to stay neck and neck with their neighbors without much thought as to how the pace is affecting their souls.
And with this thesis, Ann examines what life can look like when the Joneses are allowed to go their own way, and we are allowed to go ours.
Can we move at a pace that encourages our children to see the needs of others, and respond? Can we move at a pace that allows our kids to explore their faith? Are we allowing our children enough time to explore their own sense of creativity and art—even if it works its way into the front cover of a treasured book (oh, bother!)? Or, are we shuttling them from one event to another in hopes that they will find that one activity that will bring them self-satisfaction and pier acceptance? Ann takes these questions head on, examining the virtues of the slower way.
As if this were not enough, Ann writes two must read chapters on our electronic dependency/addiction and on slowing down our children’s sexuality. These chapters solidify this book as one that needs to be in the home library of every parent.
As I read Not So Fast, I found myself loosening—unwinding enough to examine the path of my family and to ask whether there is a better way. I questioned whether my pace was slow enough to foster wonder and creativity in my children, whether I moved at a pace slow enough to listen. And in one of these moments, when Ike asked if I could stop long enough to play a game of checkers, I fought the urge to say “not now, Daddy’s busy,” and instead, said, “betcha can’t beat me.”
And for this, I owe Ann Kroeker a tremendous debt of gratitude.
If you would like to enter here for a chance to win a signed copy of Ann Kroeker’s Not So Fast, all you have to do is leave a comment. For additional entries, spread the word about this post, and leave another comment letting us know. Thank you, always, for hearing our hearts here at theRunaMuck.
*UPDATE* I forgot to say that we’ll use the Random Integer thingy to pick a number this Sunday, September 20th at 6:00 PM CST. Continue entering until then, and Seth mentioned in the comments that if you go ahead and purchase the book, tell us in the comments and that will count for 3 entries!
Support me with a Divine Caroline vote?
Tweet with me? I’m Amberrunsamuck.