What a wonderful experience our boys had today! We took a driving tour around Amish country. Growing up in western Pa and going to college in an “Amish town”, means that seeing Amish people was a part of every day life for me.
However, for our sweet boys, it was new…and different…and eye-opening. Hearing our boys ask questions and talk about what they learned about the Amish community has shown me just how much they enjoy learning about different cultures and perspectives. It’s not always easy to answer their questions, because sometimes their questions are really big. But the beautiful thing is, we are able to talk about ideas and concepts and build on the answers as they grow. Being a parent is all about balancing. Eventually our boys will have more questions about the Amish people and the “English” people. But for today, it was really fun to show them a culture and part of the country they had never seen before!
One of the beautiful things about the Amish in western Pa, is the ability for the “English” and Amish to co exist. They share one lane bridges, their farms border each other, they rely on each other for goods and services, and yet…their lives and cultures are so vastly different.
It’s a life lesson for sure, to understand that the lives of the Amish are no worse or better than the lives of the English. No one is any better than any one else. No one is “right”. Everyone exists in a world together, with acceptance that the cultures are vastly different, and that’s beautiful.
We met a man today who made rocking chairs, he was kind and patient as we explored his wood shop and asked him questions. He asked us questions about Florida. Down the road we talked with a man who asked about the sweet family who lost their child in an alligator attack. He showed genuine concern and interest. We talked to the boys about how Amish families are entrepreneurs. Finding ways to support their families.
Sweet little girls waved as our boys walked out of their dad’s feed and tack store. They looked from a distance with interest and curiosity, the same interest and curiosity I saw in the eyes of our boys.
I hope that our boys will always ask questions. I also hope that they will always be willing to accept those who may live differently, believe differently, think differently, or act differently. I love their curiosity. I love their acceptance. And I love their pursuit of knowledge.