My kids actually are thoughtful… in their own, special way. So I thought I’d take a minute before we leave the house finally (hey, it’s only 7:30…. p.m.) to acknowledge this.
I pretty much wear pajamas all day unless we leave. Then I put on makeup, touch up my nail polish and change my clothes. So after getting everyone ready (and as I mentioned, it’s already late), my ten year old asked, a little anxiously,
“Are you going dressed like that?”
“Do you think I should change?” I asked playfully. He nodded. “Will I embarrass you if I walk out like this??” He nodded sheepishly. “So you want me to get all dressed up?”
“Well maybe just jeans… and change your socks and shoes…”
I remember the last day of kindergarten. The classes were crazy with anticipation for the day that seemed impossible to ever arrive. A school year lasted F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Repeat until I’m 18? I’ll be dead before I finish school!!!
Good news, I made it through the long years without old age and death getting me first!
Fast forward to now: my 13 year old stood in the kitchen of our temporary rental house, flicking on and off the light. I told him to stop.
“Yeah,” chimed in the 6 year old (who is always on hand for, um, back up). “This house is old! It’s like… TWO YEARS OLD!”
Not to argue, but it’s at least 30. That was unfathomable to her, of course! Maybe they’ll be even more careful, considering it’s nearing old age and disability.
Life is full of big events. Changes that are difficult and those that we look forward to with arms wide open. Then there are the choices, both small and significant. Sometimes, the decisions seem more obvious than others. For example, homeschooling my children. While it was a big decision, it was an easy one for me to make. My husband has always been for public school, but he supported my desire to home educate. Surprisingly, the more difficult choices along the way have been what curriculum is best and for what child.
Since making that decision years ago, three more kids have come into our world, and now another is on the way. My sixth pregnancy was a difficult one. For reasons I cannot explain, my hormones hit me hard and I suffered severe depression. I went through our day to the best of my ability, but it was a struggle. But, baby was born and the debilitating hormones vanished with the belly. Life continued to move on. More changes… a move still in process, seven months now! And we adapt, some days getting little done because the house needed to be shown. Weeks were broken up moving from place to place. But still, we adapted, the kids and I, taking each day and its struggle as it came. And then we found out baby seven was coming. My husband decided it would be best for the kids to go to public school in January. This was not a discussion, but his decision. My heart broke into pieces. I was filled with doubts in all areas. Did I ever think I could educate them all the way through high school? Sure, I know successful, well adjusted, happy kids who finished their educations at home. But that was them. This is me and mine. And what about their adjustment into school? Sure, they are strong, good kids who have adapted many times over, riding each wave as it came. But still, the ache in my heart is there and the mixture of emotions – relief, guilt, fear and anxiety. Suddenly school work doesn’t even seem important (don’t freak – we’re doing it). I want more time!! More time to paint and make crafts. To have them help me with meals. To snuggle on the couches together, reading, playing, or just being together. Running around the empty parks (a perk of being a homeschooler), anything! Time is so precious, so short and fleeting. Regardless of where your kids are during the day, the reality is our time together with our children is only a small portion of their lives. But for a mama used to having her brood with her all day, everyday, that time seems to be slipping through the hour glass at an accelerated rate. What could I have done differently? Anything?? What can I do now? I look in their eyes and my heart is filled with such longing. Longing for more….
Kids come up with the best explanations! Hands down, every time, their reasoning for the world around them is innocent, yet witty and funny.
As we were driving around this chilly evening, my five year old sat looking out the window. Suddenly he said with much excitement, “It’s a bird party!” I didn’t even notice that all the power lines were covered in little birds scrunched together as close as possible. But sure enough, there they were, having a party!