Letter J is for Joy
We think our best is not good enough. We compare our children to other homeschool children. Their kids are doing so much better in certain areas and can name all the presidents, quote the constitution, do amazing crafts, and are grades ahead of my kid! Then you wonder what you are doing wrong. Oh wait their house is always clean and they do outside activities. Joy zapper don’t you think. We are our own worst enemy when it comes to homeschooling our children. We are also our own worst joy zapper.
Just because that may be what works for that family doesn’t mean it is what we should be doing. We always seem to notice our own weakness, but what about our strengths? Whether you realize it or not we have strengths and skills that other family may or may not have.
The biggest joy zapper is discontentment and we need to appreciate what are kids are doing. Most homeschool moms are doing the best they can. Stop looking at others who homeschool or the homeschool blog that looks like they have the perfect curriculum, kids, and the perfect homeschool. You are going to get zapped of your joy if you do.
True, it’s not easy to have joy if we are sick, days behind in school, the laundry is piled up, and dinner isn’t on the table when your husband comes home. Let’s not forget that the kids are constantly fighting.
However, focusing on the things we do have, and realizing that we all have those days or even weeks is okay. Trust me I have weeks. I live with an autistic child with behavioral issues. Sometimes it seems to never end.
Maybe you need to look at your goals or curriculum if your kids are really behind in some areas. Are we expecting them to do more than they can, or maybe they are bored. I found that out with my son when he was in third grade with language arts. I thought he was really behind and not getting it. He was flying through it at the speed of light and not doing so well.
My friend suggested I give him a Pass Test at home. I did it reluctantly because; I was at the end of my rope. Boy was I surprised. He was several grades ahead in that particular subject in several areas and other areas he needed to review some topics. He was bored and it was too easy for him. When I asked him about it he told me, “It was boring and I already knew it so I just guessed the answers so it would be done with.” My thinking was that if he already knew it he would have not got so many answers wrong every time we did language arts. That didn’t seem very logical to me. For him it was logical. Now, he is challenged in language arts and let’s face it language arts is not his favorite subject. I just needed to adjust my curriculum.
Having a child with learning disabilities is a big challenge. Just about every curriculum I have to adjust for her. Now, that she is 14 I see her strengths and weaknesses academically and I build on the strengths and go slow and steady in her weakness.
Lastly, God is our strength in all things. Even in homeschooling. Some days I find that I need to step back and spend some time with God. I need an adjustment myself and I'm blaming the kids and the curriculum. In reality I am the problem. MY heart needs a checkup. I pray daily for God to give me joy and to direct our homeschool. I need God to help me to guide my children spiritually and academically. I want my kids academically to do better than I did. I want to also be realistic with their abilities.
I make sure I wake up early before the kids get up to read and pray. I sure can tell the difference when I don’t get my time with God. Yes, I’m tired getting up early. Actually, I’m always tired if you want to know the truth.
Remember don’t compare your kids progress to others it will just zap your joy. It’s okay to take a day off to refresh yourself. We homeschool moms have a 24/7 hour job that we can’t just leave at work and take care of it tomorrow. Our kids are worth it and I believe most of us homeschool because we want to invest into our kid’s hearts and academics.
Don’t let discontentment creep in an be a joy zapper. When our joy is zapped it zaps the joy out of our kids too.
Other bloggers have joined in Blogging through the Alphabet. Annette and Amanda are hosting this on their blogs. Stop by and see what they are blogging about with the letter J.