You might remember that one of my last blogs (Inspect What You Expect) left you with a cliff hanger!!! I’m SURE you have been waiting with bated breath to hear how I got the dog poo out of the basement window well. At least humor me… Honestly it was rather anticlimactic. I opened the window, got a rubber glove and a bucket, and went to town. It just had to be done. My failure to deal with it in the fall only left the same poo to be dealt with in the spring. It didn’t just go away.
So how does this apply to the school year? Well last year at the end of the year, we were all excited and ready for a break. A break from lunch packing, homework schedules, teacher communication, getting out the door without looking like a homeless person, or whatever your “thing” was. But just like the poo, all those things didn’t go away over the summer. They’re all back!
Back and Better Than EVER!
I like Pinterest, I like idea-sharing, I like efficiency, in fact I plan for efficiency. At some level, I think all parents do. Their goal and hope is to have things “ready.” Obviously we are all at different levels of readiness. The question I’m asking myself this school year is, “What if all the preparation doesn’t pay off?” So for instance, when….
I set out all of the clothes the night before. My girls wake up complaining about how those jeans don’t feel right.
I make lunch the night before (or better yet, have a super cool organizer for my child to be able to make his own lunch). But my child forgets to utilize my hard work and put his lunch in his bag.
I have asked said child 3 times to brush his teeth, and the last time yelled to get his attention.
I set aside time in my day to help with homework, and I don’t understand what the homework is!
I daily remind my children as they head out the door to make good choices, and yet I receive a poor report from school.
I nightly pray God’s protection over my children while they are at school. I find out my child was injured at school.
I want my kids to have the whole package of experiences when it comes to school and childhood, and now I find myself running every different direction.
You homeschool your children. You wield the double sword of academic education and parenting all in one sitting!
So when… all of these things happen, what’s going to make this year different? My “response” is what I hope and pray will be different. I want to try using the ultimate “life hack” – the infallible Word of God:)
So when the jeans don’t fit right and complaints come pouring out of my child’s mouth… I want to gently and kindly remind them (and myself) that God tells us to “Do everything without complaining or arguing” Philippians 2:14. Even when putting on our clothes. And then remind them to be thankful they have clothes (or at least clean ones).
And when the child forgets to take the lunch I so DILIGENTLY prepared, maybe this time I will choose to show grace (knowing that I forget things too) and gently remind him that this is his responsibility and God values diligence. Proverbs 22:29
When I find myself yelling to get my child’s attention… I hope to first, stop yelling because James 1:20 tells me that “the anger of man, does not produce right action”. And then I will consistently hold my child accountable to responding the first time.
When I find I don’t understand what is happening at school whether it be homework, social interactions, or safety issues, I will pursue being “quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” James 1:19. Knowing that I should not rush to judgement or emotion before hearing all the facts.
When I find myself signed up for too many things, I want to run everything through the grid of Matthew 6:33 to determine if the activity has Kingdom value. How can I (and my children) best love God and others through this activity. “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things (even a blessed and full childhood) will be added to you.”
And homeschool parents, you have one of the hardest jobs out there! I’ve often thought about how hard that would be. If I were in that situation I would imagine I would cling to all of the same truths and then plead with God to bathe me in buckets of grace as I seek to “speak truth (educate) in love” all while seeking to parent my children well.
So this year with God’s help, I am purposing to do things differently. I don’t want the same poo to be there at the end of the year… Who wants to join me?
Director of MVF Kids