I like pretty pictures. I get swoony when I see pink macarons on a marble backdrop with a sprig of sweetpeas in the background. My heart goes extra thumpy when I see kids playing in a brightly sunlit play space full of vintage treasures and natural materials. I know, I KNOW that those pictures represent one single second, and can be taken out of context. And yet they succeed in making me want more for myself. Every time. Sometimes they’re a little fire under me that inspires me to change my life for the better. And sometimes they just make me see what feel like flaws in my own life. Today I’m working through this homeschooling thing. I’m working through my feelings of overwhelm.
Some moms seem like they’re so natural at homeschooling. It appears to be second nature. I have no doubt that they’re the kinds of moms who never yell, whose children put everything back where they find it when they’re finished playing, whose children never yell at each other or take toys from each other. I’m positive that their snacks include home baked bread that they made together from homegrown wheat berries that they grind with a hand grinder and have drizzled with honey from their garden beehive. There’s no doubt in my mind that their children potty trained themselves. Or that everyone sits down at the same time every day to do their homeschool work after a glorious nature walk where they stop to take in all of the beauty along the way. And I can’t help feeling- WHY ISN’T MY LIFE LIKE THAT???
I know these things are partial truths. I know it. I KNOW IT. The homeschool moms that I know in real life do not have lives like that. They’re real people. We have questions that I can’t seem to find answers to. If anyone has answers to the following questions I would LOVE to hear them.
How do I work from home and also homeschool/engage with my children?
How do I get my children to sleep past 5 am? That’s a trick question- THEY WON’T.
How do I retain my sense of self and also give myself to kids and home, 24 hours a day?
How do I survive this?
Motherhood is no joke, but now that G is a little older I see that really, toddlerhood is no joke. Two and a half years old is NO JOKE. It’s better than the phase where she danced on the table and also climbed into the dryer and closed the door, before spilling paint on the floor and dancing in it (all before 9 am). But it’s still really intense. Two and a half is clinging, relentless, devouring attachment. Two and a half is demanding the pink cup and screaming bloody murder in the backseat because someone touched her arm. Gaspar wasn’t like this. I never even needed baby locks on things because he just didn’t get into that kind of trouble. His tantrum phase lasted about 3 weeks. Lola is an entirely different kind of toddler. I find it very, very difficult to demonstrate limitless patience and love and affection when faced with this brand of inflexibility and unwavering NEED. How can I be a magical and kind homeschool mom when all I want is to move my arms freely or go to the bathroom by myself or have a cup of coffee uninterrupted? I’m having a rough week this week. I have questions and chaos and I long for answers and peace.