Ahh, well. It had to happen, didn't it?
The homeschool area is moved. The rumpus is neat and organised within an inch of it's life. I've re-discovered all our resources and have lots of good things to do.
So of course, our homeschooling days have turned into a big pile of poo. As the rain pelts down or drizzles down, so have our tears. See - I told you I wasn't perfect, didn't I? Beth at Shut Up and Run (one of my favourite blogs - you have to read it, even if you don't run) isn't either - it's overrated. Just as well.
My push to get some persuasive writing completed, even if I was ever so supportive, knowing it is not our favourite thing to work on, resulted in tears (first Video Boy, then Wombat Girl because I was helping him too much), anxiety, stress, flinging oneself onto the reading couch in despair, and me running to the loo to have a quiet cry in despair. Maybe the constant rain around here hasn't helped. But I lost it this week. Lost my temper and my mojo.
I know, deep down inside, that despite being gifted, both kids have some level of weakness in their executive functioning - you know, the higher order skills in being able to sort through thoughts, hold them in their heads, organise them and put them on paper. On being organised enough to not run late every week for swimming. To know how to tidy up their room. I know that they struggle with these things. Whether or not they are severe enough to count as the inattentive type of ADHD we are waiting until May (which is how long you have to wait to get to see a specialist).
I thought I had scaffolded well. Broke the task down into bite-sized chunks. Provided kind, supportive words. But DAMN!!! How hard could it be??????? Deep breath. Hard, apparently. And it doesn't help that Video Boy seems to have developed some kind of a cold (he fell asleep during Peter Pan - I swear I read aloud much more interestingly than that statement makes it sound!).
What is a homeschooling mum to do? Dream of sending them back to school again? (well, maybe, just for a millisecond!). But that is not the answer.
I need to take a step back. Find some joy in learning again. At least for a few days, avoid the source of stress. Be available to answer their questions. Say "yes" to art, and cooking, and music, and science experiments. Don't stress that because we didn't do much academic work last week because of the big rearrange/tidy up and know that it will come in good time?
And question what sort of education do we want. Need. Can we incorporate our persuasive writing in a more natural way - when the need for it pops up in real life? As a letter to the editor of our local paper. Am I only pushing this because of a case of the "shoulds" - because they have said they want to do NAPLAN exams, I am stressing because the writing component (their weakest link) is persuasive writing? I mean, really, who cares?
I need to look at the bigger picture. Are they learning (some stuff) - yes. Are they happy - well, most of the time, except when their mum is making them do stuff that is really hard for them. Will they grow up to be well adjusted young adults - one can only hope and I think there is more chance of that if we homeschool, than if I packed them off to high school.
So breath. Cuddle. Say "yes". Keep reading books and inspiring words on other blogs. And keep on going. Because that's what we all do, isn't it??