I had to laugh when Jennifer at Hediedforme asked how I was doing all this work and keeping up with everything. The answer to how am I managing is not very well. I walk through my manor of incompletion daily—clothes waiting to be folded and put away, schoolwork waiting to be checked, and paint cans placed conveniently to wrap up the home improvement projects I started weeks ago. With the onslaught of course work this fall I’ve not been as involved as I like to be in the kids’ work. I’ve also missed a mid-week service a time or two in the midst of keeping it all together at home and work. I know that my first responsibility as a Christian wife and mom (after building my relationship with God) is to my husband and then to my kids, so I try to show myself the grace that I’m learning to show others.
You know what I’ve realized in the last weeks? They can learn so much without me! Yes, as much as I hate to admit it, their little minds actually do work without my careful attention to the planner, the lesson plan, or the course schedule! Of course I say all of this tongue-in-cheek, but it’s been a powerful lesson for me in learning to back off some. The oldest and I have had some great discussions in which she has been able to recall relevant historical facts on a given subject. Even better, I hear her heart for God and her spiritual discernment as she begins to sort things out for herself. Our son, who hated to color as a smaller child, is illustrating his work beautifully and looking for opportunities to draw (he says that he doesn’t like to color what others have drawn, but instead enjoys creating the picture himself—hmmm…I sense another blog entry on that one, but I’ll save it for another time). While out of town, my husband worked with the kids on their schooling activities. He gives me a hard time, laughing about me being the taskmaster, but he had to admit that he was amazed at how they would work together and help each other when he wasn’t immediately available.
Life’s circumstances are finally forcing me, temporarily, to stop and smell the roses academically, and I’m enjoying a sweet fragrance. I see children who love learning, and it is an exciting place to be.