We’ve all felt it. The creeping anxiety as you feel you are already a bit behind with your lessons and your child wakes up with the flu. More sick days? Or you get an unexpected twist in your schedule that throws off the whole day or even week. More boxes not checked off? Sometimes you feel that your schedule or your lesson plans just can’t fit anymore of those days into it. How will we ever get it all done? I’ve watched these thoughts emotionally drain so many homeschooling moms, myself included.
Homeschooling is so much more than sitting around the table with open books. Releasing the pressure of teaching often lets us see the big picture of raising children instead of scholars. I found myself needing to be reminded of this last week.
In 2011, our son was diagnosed with a very rare and serious heart defect. Our decision to homeschool in part was based on the fact that our life needed a lot of flexibility with different traveling and doctors appointments.
It was important to us to be able to travel as a family and we knew how precious every moment was together. I was surprised that even with that perspective I would stress over a missed lesson. But, it happens to all of us. We fail at times to see beyond the books and overlook the importance of those days that we don’t get to check off our lists.
Last Wednesday we traveled to Houston to have our son monitored, as he regularly does. I got a front row seat to my five year old daughter sitting on the hospital bed with our son as they did his testing, speaking encouragement to her brother. Words such as, “You can do it buddy. You are so brave.” She waited with him for his results and cheered with him as we found out the good news that he is not in heart failure.
I watched as my children walked the halls of the largest freestanding children’s hospital in the world. Hand in hand they marched with smiles and laughter. They were confident in a place where uncertainty rains. They were joyful in one of the most desperate places you can be. As my kids giggled in the back of my car on the way home, I remember asking myself how I could have ever felt anything was more important than this. Lord, please forgive my anxious heart.
At the bottom of my school planner I have a blank space labeled, “Weeks most memorable moments and Evidences of Grace”. It’s so good to keep the perspective in the right place. There may be weeks where you feel you can’t check off all your subjects or you feel like you barely touched on what you planned, but always take the time to look back on what you did get done. This last week in Houston I didn’t get a chance to get to everything, but at the bottom of my planner I have this written:
Weeks Most Memerable Moments & Evidences of Grace (Provision):
” I watched my kids exhibit the joy of the Lord, the confidence of His promises, and the love of His sacrifice in a time where the world says they should be shackled with grief. Medical explanations were unfounded once again as God continues to use our son to redefine what’s possible. My kids watched another miracle today. Thank you Jesus for this week”
The big picture of homeschooling doesn’t look at the sick days or the last minute days off. It looks at the heart of children. Are we merely raising children who are concerned with checking off boxes or are we choosing to raise intelligent children who are filled with faith and compassion for the world around them?
Have you had days that were hard to let go of lessons? What things have helped remind you of the big picture of homeschooling?
Keep the perspective and don’t forget to look for the evidences of His grace. They are everywhere!