“Mom what’s wrong?”
“Mom, what’s the matter?”
I must have heard that question from each of my kids atleast three times a piece during our morning school time.
“Nothing,” I continually replied, not trying to lie, but not knowing how to put my feelings into words.
All I knew was, I was cracking…again. Tears were welling up, about to break, but I desperately tried to hold it together. Obviously, I was doing a terrible job.
I don’t know why I was about to lose it. It just felt like the amount of school work kept building and my supply of energy to fulfill that school work was waning in the opposite direction.
My stomach was in a knot and my thoughts were saying, honestly, I hate homeschooling right now!
I thought I was making progress. I’ve bought into the vision of homeschooling and I want this to work now. So here’s what that means: I love the idea of homeschooling, but the day to day working out of it continues to chip away at me.
But as I’ve stepped back from this horrible day, I see now why it was so hard. I don’t know why I didn’t see it earlier.
Our first official day of Classical Conversations (CC) was the day before. So my oldest has a brand new week of his class (which is called Challenge B) that I need to generally wrap my brain around and figure out when and where he needs my help.
My daughter had her first day of English class (which is called Essentials), so this is day ONE of ever incorporating that homework into her daily schoolwork. There’s charts to copy and memorize, ideas to further explain and a key word outline to complete.
Zach also had his first day in the morning program (called foundations) so we have new memory work to recap and drill from that too.
Wow, my hand hurts just writing all that out. I see why my brain hurt at 10 am when I tried to bulldoze through the pile of dirt in front of me. I didn’t realize how massive that pile was!
I didn’t take into account the amount of time I needed to spend one on one with my daughter. I won’t have to do this everyday or every week, but I do need to this week because she’s never done any of it before.
It was 11:30 before I could even start getting Zach set up on his work. I thought that would be better than me starting him and him having to come ask me questions every 5 minutes. But by 11:30 I was hungry and my patience for 2nd grade math and phonics was thin.
Then, I’d told Caleb to “hold all questions for me until after lunch.” So he had a stack of stuff to go through with me after I finished with Zach and Mackenzie.
And I had new friends coming over at 2:00!
For lunch I walled myself in my little computer/office room and ate by myself and cried. My prayer sounded a lot like this –
I’m cracking Lord! I believe you’ve called me here. I need your help. I need you to show up in my weakness. I’ve put my hope in you. When will this get easier? I’m not looking for it to be easy, but I want to get through a day with joy and without crying. When will I stop thinking my kids would be better off in school? I’ve prayed for you to take that thought away from me. Your word is trustworthy. Help me! The water is about to sweep over me and wipe me out. I am holding onto you that you called me here. Preserve me and my sanity in your love as I obey this calling.
Somehow, after that terrible day, I woke up encouraged the next morning. A verse that came to mind was Proverbs 13:12 and 13:19, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick… A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul.”
When I say I hope tomorrow is better, over and over and over but it never really is, my heart gets sick. But I have no other choice than to hope in the Lord that He will sustain me in the good and bad days and I believe eventually my longing will be fulfilled.
Our last full year of homeschooling, all three of my kids were doing a lot of the same work together. We read the same books, memorized the same information and did it together.
Now, Caleb is in his own class and does completely separate work. Mackenzie is in her own English class with her own assignments and Zach is left kinda on his own.
So all that means, we went from a one room school house approach to 3 separate classrooms, 7 subjects and only 1 teacher for all. No wonder I’m having a hard time!
As I keep discovering triggers that shut me down, I keep trying to find ways around it or better ways to respond to them.
There are just modifications we have to make as a team for this home-school thing to work. The days are still crazy, but they’re getting more productive and no one asked me once what was wrong today. And that is sweet to my soul!
Father thank you for deferred hope and fulfilled longings. If we didn’t have the deferred hopes, we wouldn’t appreciate the blessings you provide. Help us all make the modifications we need to for homeschooling to work for us. Give us wisdom to know what works and what doesn’t. Thank you for loving us. In Jesus name, Amen.
This post is apart of a series called 31 stories of hope for every homeschooler. To see the entire series, click HERE.