So we had this family meeting.
Just a few short weeks ago.
Chores were delegated. Assignment schedules were developed. Cubbies were cleaned out, rooms were straightened, expectations were defined, refined, and polished. Homeschool vision was established.
This year would be stellar.
Now, just a relative handful of days later, the shiny of mid-August is already a tattered ghost of itself mid-September. One of my kids has already lost a book. We’ve already had some extremely heated discussions over spelling words. Pencils have left the premises. Answer keys have disappeared. The chore list is at the bottom of a pile on my piled desk. There have been territorial skirmishes over the computer that is to be used for online subjects.
There have been tears. And drama.
A sassy mouth toward a tutor.
And some unforeseen travel and work projects for me.
Which have further thrown my best intentions into a snarled skein of discord.
I’d throw in the towel. But I can’t find it.
We’ve had school years that met all their carefully planned glory.
And then we’ve had some like this one is starting off to be.
Maybe you’re there too.
You created the Pinterest perfect mudroom scenario in the hall by the garage. You spent a little extra money on the sticky-backed corkboard squares and framed them out for important papers and art projects. You laminated cute name tags for backpacks, ordered those Bento box containers for lunches, resolved to put a Mom love note in said Bento box everyday.
And you did it. Until you didn’t.
Because the alarm didn’t go off. The baby starting teething in the middle of the night. A brand new tennis shoe went AWOL. And somehow, Back-To-School night didn’t make it on to your calendar and now you feel like a contestant for Worst Parent in the World, with all the PTA staring at you.
You are not alone.
It’s in the wilds of woeful schooling that I take a page from the wisdom of fitness and working out: tomorrow is another day. Just because I didn’t go as far, last as long, push as hard, it’s no reason to not start again tomorrow. It’s a field expedition, this educating of our kids, in public, private, co-op, and homeschool. We try to some things, we see what works, we see what doesn’t. We build muscle, we gain endurance on some days. Some days we don’t.
And then we adjust.
And adjust again.
This education journey isn’t comprised of one-time pop quizzes, but rather a series of do-overs until we get it somewhat approximating the right direction.
Which is sometimes an unfortunate thing.
But most often a fortunate one.
I’m readjusting my expectations in the wake of the September school doldrums. I’m evaluating what was Homeschool Perfection Fantasy versus our day-to-day-lots-of-kids-working-mom reality. I’m really hoping to find that missing school book soon.
I’ll keep another on order in my Amazon cart just in case.
So the Bento boxes are already bent and the cute name tag on the backpack is already lost and your kid already has a couple of tardies to school.
And live to educate another day.
Just eight more months to go…