Be Enough Me: Now What?

School has been in session for about three weeks now. It has been a series of late nights and early mornings.

Homeschooling feels like a full-time job. I prep lesson plans, set out supplies, create projects and deadlines. I have even started planning field trips and special rewards for completed units. Laundry and housekeeping wait until the weekend, and meal planning has morphed into meal prepping on Sundays. Now I stock my freezer and fridge full of meals rather than ingredients. I know that burning the candle on both ends is not an option, so I go to bed when I am tired, or else risk getting sick. But that means there is limited time for recreational reading, blogging and exercising. There is little time to be anything other than wife and mother.

One of DW’s biggest concerns about me homeschooling The Hare, was burnout and resentment. He worried I would regret giving up my quiet house and hours of uninterrupted “me time”. I think others had similar concerns, with an underlying fear that The Hare would not receive the education or resources she needed to succeed. And I think everyone worried she would miss conventional school. After all, she has been in the system for five years.

At the end of each day or week, The Hare and I are pelted with the same question, “How is school going?”

Perhaps it is my own insecurities, but I hear a tone of pessimism or disbelief in those few words, as if everyone is waiting for me to break down. Waiting for me to say “I can’t do this anymore”, to which the obvious response would be, “Now what?”

Only there is no “now what”, there is only “right now”.

Right now I am exactly where I am supposed to be, giving my youngest daughter permission to be herself. I am creating time and space for her to emotionally mature while learning in a way that most engages her entire being. She is sleeping more soundly and having less mood swings. Her attitude is one of “what are we doing today?” rather than “I wish it didn’t have to be tomorrow”.

This school year, this day, is the answer to the question I asked myself last December “Now what?” when I felt like The Hare was unraveling at a rapid pace.

And for now, it is enough.

 

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About My Pajama Days

I am Emily Okaty Wilson, freelance writer, blogger and public speaker. It sounds better than saying I stay in my pajamas all day eating salt and vinegar chips. I claim to be a wife, a mother, a homeschool teacher and a musician. Sometimes I'm funny.
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7 Responses to Be Enough Me: Now What?

  1. vinobaby says:

    Sounds like your “right now” has you in the right place for everyone involved. Good luck to you on your homeschooling journey.

  2. Great post. I love how you’re at a good “now what” place with this. My brother homeschools 7 (or has, a few of them are graduated now). I know how well it can work. It’s frustrating when people don’t give it the credit it deserves. Good for you.

  3. Robin Farr says:

    Good for you! I can’t imagine how challenging homeschooling must be, but it sounds like you have the right perspective and really want to make it work. So I imagine it will!

  4. Miriam Joy says:

    Awesome post, and continuous good-luck wishes on the homeschooling front.

  5. I don’t doubt that you can do this, you have the skills, the patience and the love. Just make some time for rest and some for play. For both of you. Being a parent will always be a full time job, homeschooling is just another aspect of the same one. :)

  6. Coming East says:

    Well, I am one who has none of those concerns because I know what an incredible mother you are and how smart you are, and I have no doubts in my head that my granddaughter will learn more this year than she ever would have if she had stayed in a conventional setting. And your approach is just right. Take one day at a time. Plus, this is making you smarter, too, because you are reviewing all this material. At the end of the year you should try to get on the show, “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?” Maybe you could win some big bucks and reward yourself with a cruise to Alaska. Take me with you!

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