This beautiful little girl challenges me in ways I never expected. I never knew it would be so hard to teach and discipline such a sweet child. She is a firecracker, and I praise God for her. I am learning, failing, surrendering, and praying for some sanctifying to happen in my own heart as I pray the same for her.

On a somewhat related topic, homeschooling has been a serious challenge lately. As in, I haven’t been doing much of anything. I’m too overwhelmed by it all. Then I make myself feel better by saying I’m unschooling at the moment…which really doesn’t make me feel any better because it still just looks like a messy house with kids whining for snacks. What’s educational about that?

I’m reading a book that I borrowed from a friend, called Help for the Harried Homeschooler. Harried homeschooler? Yes, that would be me. Being a mother to four children age six and under is more than a full time job on its own. Add home education to the mix and I feel like I am up the creek without a paddle. Or is that down the creek?

When we started this journey, I thought that if we could just manage to pick the right curriculum, everything would be a breeze. Well either we didn’t pick the right curriculum, or else no curriculum can promise smooth sailing. I’m going with option B on that. The curriculum itself seems fine (although perhaps a little more Type-A than I am comfortable with), I just can’t seem to squish it into the day. Between making three meals, providing at least two snacks, nursing a baby, napping a baby, keeping the house tidy enough that you can walk through it, keeping the kitchen counters clear enough to find a corner to prepare food on, washing clothes, hosting our church community group once a week, and finding time to sleep somewhere in all that, school just doesn’t seem to get done.

I know it’s okay to cut myself some slack. This is kindergarten after all. It’s really not that serious. At some point though, I need to get more organized. I need to find a rhythm and flow to the day, and organization to the home, so that we can accomplish a consistent amount of school around here. As I do so, I need to make sure I am doing what works for us, and not comparing myself to what other women do. The book I mentioned earlier worded it really well,

“Comparison keeps us from celebrating our uniqueness. If only we had as much room in our house as they do, we tell ourselves. If only we could afford the curriculum they use. If only my husband were home as much as hers is!

“‘If onlys’ rob us of contentment. The fact is, our house is our house. We have the income we have. Our husbands are home as often as they are home. We are a one-of-a-kind family who has made the choices right for us.”

So I continue to forge ahead, drawing on the wisdom of other women who are doing this alongside me, or have gone ahead of me, but ultimately the challenge is not to copy what they have done/are doing, but rather find what works for our family. We are unique, of that I am fully convinced. Now I just need to figure out what our unique way of schooling looks like.

One Response to “Forging A Path”

  1. Ashley:

    Very inspirational! I hope you find your homeschooling groove soon.

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