There are a few homeschooling moms that I have the privilege to know, that can somehow manage to teach their children all that they need during their 12 years of education, and be on the move constantly. Whether it be traveling for sports, clubs, co-op’s etc., these moms are hardly ever home, but they get the job done, and get it done well. Those moms are few and far between, and are honestly a little scary 🙂
The more realistic picture of a homeschooling mom, is one of constant renewal of self. She finds what works and sticks with it, but she is constantly finding out what doesn’t work, then scrambling to find something different. As a homeschooling mom who fits that description, and hearing from countless other mom’s who are in the same boat, I say there is absolutely one variable that seems to work for all of us………staying HOME!
When we are at home, the worst that can distract me from my children is laundry, housework, cooking, sewing and blogging. As a seasoned veteran to this wonderful blessing that God has so graciously allowed me to partake in, I have finally found the discipline to only allow myself certain blocks of time to devote to my hobbies. The rest of the time, I am taking care of my faith, my family and my home…….and praise God for that!
Laundry and housework is not going to put a serious dent in my homeschooling day, because who wants to do that all day :-)? When we stay home and do what we are supposed to be doing, then it is all about the children, teaching them God’s Word, their studies, and living our lives together as a family…….along with a heavy does of fun. I love watching all of my children learn something new and I have such a peace when I see the dining room table full of bowed heads, engrossed in whatever task they are working on.
So, why do we stray so far from our nest? Is there too much freedom, the very freedom that drew us to homeschooling our young ones in the first place? Are we bored with the subjects that we find mundane (which are science and math in my family)? Or, perhaps it is less stressful when we occupy ourselves away from our dwelling, and surrounding ourselves with friends makes everyone get along better? Whatever the reason, habitually trudging off to greener pastures during our homeschool day is simply an S.O.S. call for much bigger problems within ourselves and within our family structure.
Being a peaceful and loving family unit is one of the main reasons that we homeschool, which always circles around our number one reason……..loving and serving God. As homeschoolers, we are with our little ones, our in-the-middle ones, and our oldest ones almost all of the time. Sure, that can be very trying on everyone’s nerves, and fights and squabbles are sure to come. Yet, we are also closer and more in tune with one another because of that same fact. Praying for the strength and guidance from our Savior to accept each other, and more importantly, to forgive each other, should be our goal. We need to be careful that we are not bolting at the first chance of a cool field trip, because we haven’t taken the time and effort to really learn and cherish each other, as Jesus outlined for us.
Studying boring ole’ Chemistry, or hammering away at Geometry, should not be a reason to find every excuse in the book to avoid treacherous subjects. As a parent, we should be the model of an ‘interested student’, and teach our children that even a terrible subject, such as science, should be enjoyed. Yeah, that is really hard to do when you yourself cannot stand a subject. However, you can be a model of a ‘diligent student’. One who keeps faithfully working on it, even when it is not something that we love, or even like doing. Staying home forces us to walk by our schedules, stare at our books, and remind ourselves why we are teaching our children.
Now when I am longing for a break, or searching for a distraction from our homeschool, I pray. Asking the Lord to reveal the real nature of my discontent helps me deal with it head on…….and it is almost always something within one of my relationships that is causing it. When I take the time to nurture those relationships and heal them if necessary, then miraculously, I find myself looking forward to another day in the trenches of this calling from God!