My husband watched a National Geographic special on the Amish on Netflix streaming (we love our Roku box). Now we're watching it as a family. With children at almost 18, 14, and 11 - you can imagine the range of response.
My husband has always had a fascination with the Amish way of life. He longs for a simpler life, and I truly think he could adopt this lifestyle if I would let him. Yes he uses a cell phone, the computer (begrudgingly at times), the microwave, and he drives all day calling on customers. But he worries constantly about the breakdown of "community" and families living in the same house but not together because they are all off doing their own electronic thing.
As for me? I am stuck in the middle. I love technology, it's a good thing we don't have spare money or I'd have a fantastic cellphone with data package, an iTouch, a laptop and who knows what else (I do have a 2nd Generation Kindle that was given to me as a gift). However, I do love to read a good paperback, thumb through the newspaper (I hate reading news online), enjoy Sunday afternoon naps, and the quiet of the house when everyone is gone.
I think the Amish way of life scares me because I grew up in a fairly strict fundamentalist family (no jewelry, no make up, no pants for girls, etc.). As time went by, my parents loosened up and I grew up and left home. I found my own sense of freedom in leaving a lot of that behind (not all, but a lot).
To my husband the Amish way of life looks like freedom and to me it looks like bondage. I'm glad he and I make decisions together - that's what keeps us in balance.
Labels: Amish, community, family, Sheila Siler