Thursday, March 06, 2008

Lie # 7

**This is the seventh post in a series that I have been writing from the book Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe, by Todd Wilson. (If you haven't read my other posts on the topic, you can find them by clicking on the link in the label at the end of this post.) **

That's what I love about this blog. I can start a series of posts, leave off, and pick up the series a year later! If you are a serious blogger you probably can't imagine doing that. (If you are a homeschool mom, you probably can. ;)

It's March 6th. Finally! It's March! Did you make it through the "February Freakout?" Do you typically have a FF? I do. Every year in February I have that "WHAT am I DOING??" feeling. The momentum of fall is gone. The Christmas rush is over. There are no more holidays in sight until spring break or Easter. Some of the curriculum I *loved* last summer and eagerly started last fall is staring at us, no longer fun and new. The books have creases and pages are torn out. Some of the things I thought my kids would get a kick out of got an "eh" and a shrug. Several of the plans I made in my August back-to-school-coffee-fueled-plan-a-thon were too much trouble to actually put into practice. My clothes are no longer cute. The weather doesn't know if it wants to be cold or warm (where we live) but my legs attest to the fact that it is NOT time for capris pants.

If you don't do this in February, chances are you feel this way at some point (or at many points!) in your schoolyear. It's in seasons like this that you run into.... her.

You've seen her. The "perky homeschooler."

She's perpetually dressed cute, or even worse, looks cute in *whatever* she wears. She's always in a good mood. She's excited about what she and her kids are doing in school. Moreover-- her kids are excited about it! You usually run into her when they've just come from one fabulously enriching activity and they're on their way home to write about it in their Enrichment Journals. She loves all of her curriculum and wouldn't change a thing. Just being around her makes you feel extremely guilty about your own feelings about homeschooling at the moment. Why? Because you've bought...

Lie #7: Every other mom loves homeschooling her kids.

Most of the moms I know like homeschooling most of the time. In fact, the majority of them love it (in theory) the majority of the time. But the truth is, in practice, many of us don't LOVE it each and every day. Some of us love the results of it, but not the everyday-ness of it. And... that's okay! It's hard work!

If you look at what you do that's really good for you, it's not always easy. Taking vitamins, for instance. The mediocre vitamins I get at Wal Mart that are good-but-not-that good for me are a pleasant color and not that hard to swallow. The vitamins I get from my vitamin store that are the bestest-vitamins-in-the-universe are huge, green horse pills. Which do you think I *like* taking? Which do you think actually make me feel better and more energetic?

Exercise, eating certain healthy foods, certain spiritual disciplines, ministry tasks, motherhood... most things that are best are hard! Most moms I know who are homeschooling are doing it because for whatever reason they (along with their husbands) have decided it is best for their children. But it is hard! And things that are hard are usually not The Most Fun Everyday.

I am motivated by a deep love for my kids and a commitment to do what's best for them. My husband and I have decided that homeschooling is best. (Yes, through high school!) I LOVE knowing that I'm doing what I know God has called me to do. Do I always love doing it? No. I *love* what homeschooling is. On most days I *like* what it involves. But, I *live* the reality of each day, relying on God's power and not my own energy or emotion. In fact, on the days I don't really "love" it, it's more of an offering to God and I find I'm more reliant on Him. If I love Him with all my heart, soul, and mind, and homeschool as though working for God and not man... it doesn't matter if I love it all the time.

Not loving homeschooling for a season is not the reason not to do it...Not loving it is not a sign you're not good at it...Not loving it does not make you "less" of a homeschooler than your perky friend...Not loving it gives you an opportunity to lean more on Him, and gives Him an opportunity to work His character into you as you persevere...Not loving it brings an opportunity to make necessary changes...Not loving it is okay, and it is normal.

I'll close with a quote from Wilson's book. "The things that are the easiest are usually not very good for you, but those things that take blood, sweat and tears are worth everything. So take heart. Homeschooling must be really, really good because it's really, really hard."

Everyone (even Perky Mom) has those "not-lovin'-it" seasons. Don't believe the lie!


The Lloyd Family said...

Thanks for "blessing my socks off" this morning. I feel so rejuvenated.

Have a great weekend!

Jennefer said...

Wonderful post! I *definitely* get the February blahs here so I could really relate to that. I have a friend I am going to pass this along to who will be blessed even more than I was. :)

Thanks for sharing,

my5wolfcubs said...

I think this February was worse then past Februaries as far as freakouts...or perhaps I just joined the "club." Thanks for sharing this, I'll have to read your other posts about this book. :) I can really, really relate to what you said (the curriculum I *loved* last summer, the best being hard, loving/liking/living homeschooling...). I'm so glad you stopped by my blog -- I'm looking forward to reading more about how you CM'ize your school days!

Jenny in Ca said...


loved this!!

I'm right there with the February
thing, and we keep getting sick on top of everything...lately I've woken up-got to the school table and thought, "I don't want to be here right now..."

great encouragement,

Mandy said...

I am so glad I read this. I had just started going through all of those same questions. But - you are right! It happens every year at this time and I am not the only one.

Thanks for the encouragement! I needed that reminder.


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