We are in our very own time-out, America. Not the punitive kind, mind you, but the kind from the sports field sideline, where we pause to be sure our team is okay. We are being benched in a way that we have never been asked, for an unknown amount of time.
In this lull, I know I feel all kinds of pressure to:
- make my kids stay on their academic game,
- all the while being sure they become super efficient at their chores,
- as well as teaching them to love God and others....without really leaving home.
- and....possibly potty train our 2 year-old.
From the looks of the self-made schedules from parents attempting homeschooling for the first time, I fall a tad below the rigor of other families. We land somewhere between the Frozen 2 frenzy and workbooks & microscopes. I need to mention, I am working with a six and two year-old.
Moms, dads, caretakers, you have every right to make your child’s days enriching, fun, and entertaining, but you also have permission to have some idle time, without the apps, writing practice, and fact drilling. Although we may not want to look at this as one LONG Saturday, it kind of is....with no end in sight.
It is a mighty difficult task to take the place of a reading teacher, math teacher, art teacher, science teacher, gym teacher, music teacher, cafeteria monitor, janitor, and principal. I have learned something new this week: I don’t have to do it all every single day....and it may only last until 11 a.m. on some days. A few mornings ago, I was a rockstar educator with a math activity and kinetic sand.... in the next moment, I was tempering a screaming match between kids as pancake batter dripped on the floor from my spatula.
So what if my toddler eats pickles at 10 am? So what if the two of them broke out the Halloween costumes to play “trick or treat” rather than sit on my lap to read? We simply aren’t used to being home this much. It will take most of us time to figure out our norm. One look at social media can make you doubt your practices in this adjustment time, so just do what is right for your kiddos.
When will there be another time where we are FORCED to slow down? Isn’t it interesting that an epidemic of colossal proportions makes us reach for a board game? Causes us to get really creative within the walls of our home? Is there any chance this home time will positively affect our futures?
Also, I realize there may never be a time again in our family where we are not pulled in a dozen directions for school, sports, and extracurricular stuff. I *almost* relish it. If our country wasn’t poised at the edge of panic mode, I could find something blissful in these times. Until then, I will do my best to educate from home, play at home, sing and dance and create at home, and most importantly, pray with our family about what is happening all around us.
Once every month or two, I change the memory verse for our son, and this month’s happens to be 2 Timothy 1:7. The verse reads, “For God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and self-control.” What an anchor of a verse for these rough waters! I have toyed with the idea of writing this several times and placing it in every room in our house.... and now that I have mentioned it to you, I will.
For now, we all may be doing some things differently. This too shall pass. But, in the lull, I hope you find your family rhythm, your faith tethered to our Maker and not the news anchor. Be safe, and stay well, friends!
(Puzzle photo courtesy of Colby ☺️)