Last night while watching the girls at gymnastics, I overheard a conversation between two moms. They were talking about a mom, who apparently has more kids than either of them would like to have. But then those words came out of one of their mouths, "Yeah and she homeschools!"
The other gasped, and I mean literally gasped. "Oh I could never do that. I just want to be a mom. Let someone else be the authority." Yes, no joke, those words literally came out of her mouth. So I didn't really want to eavesdrop, but we were sitting right next to each other on a set of bleachers and it was hard to not hear them. I continued to listen as they started discussing that they would lose their minds if they had to get their kids to listen 24/7. They needed a break! "How does she get any time off?" "My kid would never listen to me teach her. That's why I send her to school."
I snickered a little to myself and spoke up kindly and said, "Well you just find your groove in life and then you just kind of go with it." They looked shocked and said, "You homeschool?" I told them I homeschool all four of our kids and there are days where we all feel like screaming. But we take a break and do something fun and educational to make it through. But you always seem to find a groove. Even in a classroom the teacher and even their kids want to just scream out in frustration. So it's really no different than at home.
The funny thing is, I have been feeling very discouraged lately. My husband travels weekly for work and so I am totally responsible for everything in the house. Our kids each have their own individual needs and hurdles that we have to work through each day. Some days it seems that as soon as one finishes a sensory issue, another one is waiting to start theirs.
Needless to say, this leaves me feeling like I have nothing left in me emotionally and I am physically drained of energy. By the time Joe gets home for the weekend, I can barely function. But we all know that life still goes on, and I have to spend the weekend preparing myself and the house for the next week. I feel short changed and I know my hubby feels short changed too.
So feeling depressed and discouraged is all I seem to be able to feel lately. How many of you feel this way? I hide behind lots of Instragram photos of all we accomplish, because I need that constant reminder that even though I am feeling inadequate we are accomplishing a lot.
But I know that I need to change this feeling. I know that this way of feeling is going to just keep wearing on me. I do need a break, more than just a trip to the grocery store at 5:30 am in order to keep from taking the kids to the store with me.
When you are feeling discouraged, maybe it's time to take a week off. I mean a week off from book work. Plan a week of activities that keep the kids learning and remind you of why you homeschool.
- Take advantage of all those family museum memberships.
- Plan a daily adventure, pack a picnic and spend the week together.
- If you are short on funds, plan some movie and game times together.
- Do some crafts and art projects at home that you might not get to normally with all your book work. Make up a new board game together based on a subject that you have been studying.
- Cuddle up with blankets and have a read-a-thon.
- Go for a nature walk at the local park.
If you are looking for a hobby, try a couple of small activities. Watch videos on You Tube to learn how to knit or crochet. Watch videos on photography. Or look up information on something you would like to try. You'll be setting a good example for your kids as you look for something that you like to do. They will work on getting outside their shell also.
Think about a vacation you would like to take as a family or just as a couple, plan it out and maybe it's more possible that you thought it might have been. Is there a way to do it on a budget?
When we take a look back and see all that we have accomplished for our children and our family, it can lift our spirit. But make sure you can look back and see that you also tried some new things that "You" wanted to do, not just your husband and kids.
After a week off and taking the look back at your family's accomplishments, hopefully this will help to lift your attitude and show you that you are doing the right thing. You can see that your family is emotionally close and understand that through the tears and bickering that you are really all there for each other.
Take your break soon!