I had reached my max.
I stood in the kitchen and made my way to the bedroom, trying to get there before the dam of tears broke. What stood before me on the way to the bedroom looked like a scene from Mission Impossible when Tom Cruise is trying to enter a room while avoiding the red laser lines.
Hop over the pile of Legos here.
Don’t slip on the miscellaneous socks there.
Go around the baby dolls in their strollers.
And if I had a dime for all those Nerf gun bullets…I would live in a MANSION!
And that’s just the floor! My tables weren’t any better. Math books, Amelia Bedelia books, spelling words, half written paragraphs scattered over every flat surface.
No matter what room I entered, I couldn’t get away from kid toys and…school! No one had their space, including me, and the walls were quickly closing in on me like that scene on Star Wars.
Crying, I wrote in my journal this home-school thing is impossible. How can anyone think in this environment?
I love the “kitchen table” approach to doing school, where our learning is not confined to a classroom. But I found that having no separation in which to contain the contents that make-up school lead this only-child-mama feeling trapped.
Throughout my 8 years of home-schooling, I have rearranged my house every way possible. When we began my youngest was an infant, so he had his own room, my other 2 shared a room and we had a home-school room. Then when the baby got a little older, he went in with his brother, my daughter had her own room, and I converted the nursery into a small home-school room. But when the baby turned 2 something happened and it didn’t work for the baby to share a room with his brother, so I re-arranged again, desperate to find my rhythm.
It seemed that no matter how I sliced the pie, I was still left with the same pie.
My husband asked if I thought adding on a new room would help. I felt like if I could just get some more space, I could breathe. I just needed to have a walkway cleared of kid stuff! Just one!
It was crazy for me to think we needed more space. When we bought our house 10 years ago it seemed like a mansion. We moved from a 900 square foot mobile home into a 1600 square foot house with 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths plus a game room. With only two young kids at the time, I felt like a queen in her palace!
It’s crazy how fast things change. Three years into our spacious house and we already converted the one car garage into a master bed and bathroom. Then we added another child, the kids got older and we began home-schooling and now, you’re looking at a whole ‘nother ball game.
I felt so guilty for complaining. Abe Lincoln spent his childhood in a one room house with like 9 siblings. Why couldn’t I make this work? It wasn’t for lack of effort. It seemed like no matter how much I cleaned up, the kids leaked their stuff all over the house.
After much deliberation, Adam and I agreed it was time for remodel project #2: Operation Home-school Room. Over the next few weeks and months he drew out the design and made an estimate of the costs. He asked me if I could hang on this year and we could plan to have it done by the next school year.
That was all the hope I needed!
With the hope of a space for all the home-school books and supplies to live, I was able to joyfully make it through that school year. By Christmas time, my husband (who’s in the building industry) had some credit with a concrete company because he’d poured so many slabs over the past year. So we used that discount and poured the slab to this room.
I was thrilled! This was going to happen! I was going to make it!
Unfortunately the whole story is too long to finish today. But you don’t want to miss how this story ends, so be sure to check back here tomorrow!
This post is apart of a 31 day writing challenge. Click HERE to see the entire series.