Monday, October 28, 2013

More the Student than the Teacher

I am always amazed at how much my children teach me.  I had always assumed that in this dance of parenting, I would be the one doing the instructing.  The more I dance, the more I discover the lessons are often being taught the other way around.  My only prayer is that I am not messing these precious babies up, too much.

A month ago our oldest had an appendicitis.  It was scary and it was his first hospital stay, which was strange for him as he is usually very healthy.  I sat back many many times and marveled at his unwavering faith in the Mighty God.  Dramatic? Possibly, but the whole experience moved me to a deeper love for Jesus.  He experienced pain and even though he questioned "Why me?" is focus on Christ never wavered.  He held his gaze steadfast on him.  I want to be just like him when I grow up.

When we were home and I was helping him get back to the sofa after his shower, he stopped while he was still hunched over knowing that his next jolt on to the sofa was certainly going to be painful.  He stopped and looked right in my eyes.  I could see his eyes brimming with tears wanting the pain from abdominal surgery to subside, sooner rather than later.  He spoke words that I think of every day.  He said, "Mom, I just need to have faith.  I need to trust that God will heal me from this."

And my heart burdened with his pain experienced such a range of emotions in that moment that I am not sure how to describe it.  How often to take my focus off Christ when the going gets tough?  The pain (emotional and/or physical) is too much to bear?  How often do I try to do it my way?  Without crying out to the Lord?  My 8 year old taught me so much about focus that night.  He taught me about faith and trust.

Last week I sliced my finger while cutting bagels for lunch.  It hurt.  And in the moment of the pain and hopping around the kitchen, I slid down the cabinets until I set on the floor.  Holding my throbbing finger and I cried out to God.  Not because it was my first reaction, but because it was his first reaction.  And you know what?  I handled the pain, got my finger to stop bleeding, and was able to continue on with the day (until Sam got home and we ventured out to get stitches!)

How often do I lose my focus during the day?  Even during the small little menial tasks?  How often do I look around rather than up when I feel like my life is spinning, heading for out of control, and I just want to get  grip?

Yes, Momma's we do have a huge responsibility teaching these precious babies.  But do not forget, that we can still be the student.  I praise God that He uses my children to teach me.   

Monday, October 7, 2013

Homeschooling and Friends, for Mom!

I've had my fair of homeschooling comments that have made me step back.  I am becoming increasingly more aware how our choice to home school our children has changed relationships, both for our children and for us. I have felt the strain on friendships that have left my heart hurt.  It's no ones fault, it is just life.

And I miss those relationships.  I tried to keep both lives in a happy medium. You know, the homeschool mom mixed with the one that hangs out with friends.  Sigh.  It didn't work.  I'm afraid I'm viewed as weird because I make a choice to spend all day every day with my kids.  And it appears because of this choice,  I have some awesome super power complete an abundance of patience.  Do not be afraid, because I lack patience.  All the time.  Every day.  It is hard.  Homeschooling is hard.  Lack of friendships is hard.  Patience is hard to come by.  Spending every day correcting behaviors that come from our natural sinful behavior is hard.

I long for fun lunch breaks with friends.  Where I can sit and just chat about life without worrying about multiplication with carrying or drilling spelling words...or worse, chasing down that climbing toddler for the 849 time.

So, I am sorry, Friend.  For our lacking friendship.  For that akwardness that comes when I can't do things during the day because at that moment I am a teacher.  For that weirdness that comes just because I don't put my kids on a bus.

I feel the weight heavy on my shoulders of my children's education.  This gives me different struggles and I try to find a new way to teach an area where my child is struggling.  I don't need to hear, "Are you ready to put them in school yet?"  Or, "Maybe it is time that they go to school?"  I need support to keep going.  I know this journey is hard, but I know that God has called our family to this journey so when I receive comments that are so not supportive of our choice then I back away.  Because rather than telling me to send my kids off, I may just need a hug or some words of encouragement.

I have learned much about friendships in recent months.  It both saddens me and yet I am extremely grateful for friends that stand by me.