Tuesday, July 17, 2012
That Thing Called "Togetherness"
It's day 2 of homeschooling, so I thought I'd reflect a little. My immediate thought is: besides giving birth to them, this is the best thing I have ever done for my kids. That's not to say that it's a perfect solution, and it's only day 2...so we could still be in the "honeymoon" period. Although, we have spent all summer together and we aren't sick of each other yet, so I'd be surprised if we did at this point. (check back with me in a week and a half when we squeeze 3 adults (my 18 year old brother, my husband, and myself) and 5 kiddos into a one room cabin with no plumbing or air conditioning for 2 weeks and see if I feel the same way :) Why is this the best thing I've ever done for them? Because it's changing ME. I can see that already. I thought I was a pretty engaged parent before this, talking with the kids, paying attention to their needs, and pretty much being more attentive and involved than most, but now it is my mission, I'm spending deliberate, intentional one on one time with each of them during the day. They are each getting MORE from me than they were before this. Besides that, the prep time for each of their lessons forces me to think about each of them individually every evening after they're in bed. The time that I spend thinking about their strengths and weaknesses, likes, dislikes, and basically reflecting on WHO they are as people, and not them as a group is giving me an appreciation for them that I thought I had before. My second thought is that the amount of "togetherness" has seriously increased. I think it's really something that so many families today lack. This kid goes here doing this thing, Dad is off doing his thing, Mom has HER time....and that family bonding is seriously lacking. Maybe I'm old fashioned or have a totally different perspective than most, but I'd rather we stay home and do a lot of nothing TOGETHER than do a whole bunch of "stuff" apart. We are reading books together, sitting at the table nightly to talk about our day as a family, learning how to value each other even more than we have in the past, and learning together. In short, homeschooling was the last thing I wanted to do, but instead of listening to my selfishness, I chose to follow God's leading. And the blessings are already evident.