Tuesday, September 11, 2012


It's week 2 of school and honestly, I feel burned out. Or maybe like between what I want and what I have. Caught between a rock and a hard place.
A friend commented to me this summer about her high achieving kids. She wasn't bragging- they really are. They excel academically, athletically, socially. The kids are in school, doing well,  their family takes frequent and amazing vacations and they both have  satisfying careers. They have the resources to send their kids to private colleges and equip them with cars and stuff.

My kids are just really decent, good, kind, people who have such skewed skill sets it can make my head swim some days. We make too much money to get great scholarships but are financially limited due to a situtaion that I won't go in to.. Suffice it to say that if I dwell on it for any length of time at all, my Bitter-O-Meter hits the red mark fast.

Otoh, my husband has enough horror stories about bullying and physical attacks (to the point of suicidal ideation) drugs, sex and rock-n-roll to make your head curl. So do my older kids. And it's not that there weren't those things going around when I was in school. But the reality is that folks didn't shoot each other in school when we went. Chewing gum was a detentionable offense.

So, maybe, like so many others, we are just homeschooling to avoid societal horrors. Maybe we aren't doing anything spectacular with the edcuation we are sacrificing to give our kids. Maybe it's all just self delusion. Because once they hit a certain age, if they are not really motivated on their own I can't help them out.  That in itself is not so bad. Being on your own, figuring it out, having to sacrifice for yourself can be very motivating. Especially with God on your side. We've seen Him show up more than once, in unexpected and spectacular ways. But we live in a society that demands that kids get what they want. Not having stuff is a sign of deficiency. Entitlement, rather than self-sufficiency is the expectation. Stuff is more valued than good common decency and kindness.

My older kids had piano and horseback riding lessons, participated in Awanas and soccer, and thanks to Grandparents N spent time every summer flying to Florida. Not to mention 12 years of homeschool- private education provided by 2 parents with multiple graduate degrees. Yet, they have been told that they grew up poor. By more than one person. What exactly am I missing here?!

The house is demanding. KB and I are so sick of brasso- literally.  My head has been ready to explode for a couple of days. We've tried various other products but it doesn't do the trick.
The bills are demanding and there are always new ones, no matter how faithfully we pay, no matter how sacricially we live. There is always one more thing and it is always, unfailingly expensive.
.Homeschooling is demanding. And trying to homeschool classically- I just wonder. Why spend so much time, working so hard, when I could just hang out and let the kids hang out and call it good?
The pay-off is slow in coming. Honestly, the pay-off sometimes doesn't come.

My friend Carol wrote that she is, after years of wandering, is back home. This, in itself, is enough to bring me to tears. What is that longing for "home" anyway?  But she listed these scriptures and they gave me hope during a time when I feel tired and weary and old and worn-out and am having a hard time holding unswervingly to the hope that  I profess.

·         •Psalm 34:6 – This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles.
•Psalm 27:13-14 – I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.
•Psalm 34:17-20 – The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken.
•Heb. 10:23 – Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
•Col. 2:7 – …strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.


Laura said...

I hear you.
Two thoughts:
1. It's tough to be called.
2. We're crazy.

Hangin' on by the fingernails,

Anonymous said...

Also, just found this great post about homeschool burnout. Maybe it will help! ; )


KO said...

Love your honesty, thanks for sharing.