homeschool

What did I decide?

As you know, I was trying to decide whether I wanted to continue homeschool or to do public school this year. And it took me up until Wednesday of last week to decide that I wanted to put them in a school a little over a half an hour away.

It felt like I broke off a piece of my heart and stuck it in that school when I dropped the boys off. I guess that’s just part of it. Dropping them off. Waving goodbye. Praying for the Lord to watch over them.

I wanted so much to homeschool. I did. But it came to a point for me, that I felt like they would see more benefits at school than they would at home. I felt like they didn’t have enough here in our small town geological oddity (40 minutes to anywhere), to keep them stimulated and engaged in any activities outside of school.

They talked, and oh they are social. But they just didn’t get to experience much with teamwork, or working in a group. Things like that. I try to shy away from the s word (socialization for those unfamiliar with homeschool) Because I don’t really believe I need my kids socialized by the public school. I think they need to me socialized by me, their grandparents, their family, friends, and neighbors, the lady at walmart, the guy crossing the street. I believe my boys learned socialization just fine without going to public school. But what they haven’t learned was any kind of group work. And that was one of the reasons I put them in school.

boy wearing green crew neck shirt jumping from black stone on seashore
Photo by ajay bhargav GUDURU on Pexels.com

I believe I accomplished what I set out to accomplish with them. My goal for homeschooling was that they develop a deep trust in Christ and had a good moral foundation to make their decisions from. I know they will struggle and I know they will make mistakes, but that’s how they will learn. Now it’s my turn to trust in the Lord that he will protect them. That he will use his Holy Spirit to guide their hearts and strengthen their conscious.

Now, even though I believe these things, I am also experience some guilt. I feel like I would have gotten through with homeschooling had I continued to trust in the Lord. And that is something I’m going to have to work out with God.

 

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Mommin like a Boss

I woke up this morning, had my coffee and my bible out on the front porch with me, and my great big teddy bear Samson lounging at my side, when I heard the kids come outside. samson

Now I knew they hadn’t even come close to finishing their morning chores. And I knew in that moment, I had to make a choice. I could get mad and yell, or I could choose to take the moment, just then, and be kind. See what they wanted and why they hadn’t started on their chores. And I’m glad that this morning, I made the right choice. Benjibear had come out to tell me he loved me. In my past, I ashamedly admit that I would have reacted negatively to the kids not doing what I asked them to. Because I was tired, because I let other things lead my life, because my focus was not on God, but on everything around me. I would have taken that moment to yell at them, not to hear what they wanted to tell me, but to yell and say, “I told you three times already to get this done, get in there and do it.” And then missed the opportunity for my oldest to have a moment of connection with me.

We hear all the time how much our kids love us. So from the outside, this may seem trivial. It may seem like he was only coming to tell me he loved me because he was trying to get out of his chores. But do I truly believe that? No. I believe in his mind, he thought he needed to come tell me right then that he loved me, and that is what I want to foster in my children. Love. Confidence that he could come and tell me he love me without Mom getting mad at him. Joy that he could share his love with me.

Kids are so beautiful. They are so adaptable to their surroundings. They are true survivors. We’ve all had our moments of disappointment in ourselves as parents. We’ve all done those things that we are not proud of and wish we hadn’t done or said.  And I think it goes back to the bible, as in all things. See, what God wanted from his people to begin with, was an obedient loving people. Not people who disobeyed and tried to make up for it. He wanted our hearts. But he will take our repentance. And I think these little moments shape us. Those moments that we get mad and yell shape us. And those moments that we realize we shouldn’t have done what we did shape us, and those moments we choose to STOP and think before we react to our children shape us. For me, it’s been such a long journey. And I have a long way to go. But that’s ok. Because I know that he will finish this great work he started in me. He will give me a clean heart.

But it also made me realize, how much a Mom is like a manager. You can’t get mad and yell at your staff when they don’t listen or misunderstand. Well….I guess you can, and I’m sure some do, but they also loose alot of people that way. I don’t want to lose my kids. I want their hearts. And I have to manage them in a way that directs their paths while building them up instead of tearing them down. This morning, I really looked at being a mother like having a full time managing position. Because we are managing our families. Oftentimes as mothers, we are the ones guiding our children’s behavior. Father’s too. And we want to do so in a way that is encouraging. And I think we have to look past our initial negative knee-jerk reactions at our kids not listening, and instead take a step back. Try to imagine where they are coming from, just like you’d treat someone working for you, just like you’d treat a neighbor in Christ. You wouldn’t yell at a stranger for not doing what you asked them to do, why yell at your kids? And this is something that has truly helped me to stop yelling. Because I did alot of it. I’m not saying that temptation isn’t there, lurking at the corner. But I’m saying that instead, I’m choosing to encourage my children. Stay positive when they don’t listen, because they are not small adults, they are children. They don’t yet have the brain capacity to think like me. And that’s ok.

 

John 13:34-35 New International Version (NIV)

 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”