My teacher…the Elephant
The other day when I was reading a book about amazing animals to the girls, the animal of the day was the elephant. My Grandmother was a lover of elephants. I have no idea why, but I know that she did. In 1998 I was privileged to take a missions trip to Ivory Coast, West Africa and I brought back “elephant gifts” for her. Unfortunately I didn’t realize it was illegal to bring back ivory so I proudly and unwisely listed my family of ivory elephants on the customs report on the plane. Of course they were confiscated - but, I had forgotten about an Ivory plaque of elephants that I also bought so I didn’t list them on my custom’s report sheet and they were not confiscated. My Grandma LOVED her gift.
Since that time I have learned more about elephants and grown to appreciate them as well.
From our friend the elephant I have learned the following:
1. It takes a village…not really; (P.S. I have heard friends recite that quote; but do you know exactly what that refers to. I will give you a hint- it was made famous by Hillary Clinton) but sometimes we do need a little help. When in a tribe of elephants two mothers bare calves (baby elephants) around the same time they partner together to raise them.
2. Our children can help us with their siblings. When an elephant reaches the age of four or five it begins to help take care of the younger calf while the mother elephant is getting food, etc. One thing that my girls LOVE to do is to get into the crib with DeSean and play with him while I cook dinner. Also, Aaliyah is responsible for getting diapers for her brother and Cassidy is responsible for throwing them away. When I do either of these things they get upset with me and feel like I cheated them out of their jobs!
3. Elephant trunks are strong enough to pick up tree trunks and heavy branches; but they are also used to gently rub, and pet their little darlings. What a beautiful picture of motherhood! Sometimes we have to be strong and tough, and other times gentle and kind.
4. Baby elephants get spankings when they step out of line! Nough said!
Now that I have shared this elephant knowledge with you, you might think of me the next time you see and elephant at the zoo or circus…and that’s ok I guess; but I do hope a prettier and slimmer animal causes my children and grandchildren to remember me! On second thought, maybe the next post will be about a tigeress, or gazelle or something.
Until next time,