Probably the best place on earth to announce your neurosis is online in the public eye. Right?
I started homeschooling because I just KNEW I could do better than my kids were getting in school.
That is saying something, as I have a serious inferiority complex. I mean, I NEVER feel worthy or capable. Yet, the school system was so incredibly bad that I knew I could do better.
Go ahead, let that one sink in. . .
That first year was an incredible struggle for me. Every night I would go to bed and recount all the things I did wrong.
lost my temper
didn’t think outside the box
didn’t take into account my child
didn’t take into account “me”
“forgot” to do math 3 days in a row
couldn’t figure out the “why” of a lot of things (like “why” write in complete sentences?)
“pushing” my child too hard, too fast
You name it, I would cry about it. And to top it off, my husband was sent away shortly after I started homeschooling.
In all honesty, he’s not the “morale booster” type, so this, most likely, was a blessing in disguise. But, it meant I was “in my head” an awful lot, as I didn’t have any friends to commiserate with.
Then we moved.
And the kids went back to school.
Except, after a while, I realized that, again, I could do better. Not only did I “think” that; but I truly “realized” it.
And this would be proof positive that at least those two school systems need some SERIOUS work!
Thus, my kids came home again. And they came home to a mother with a newborn and a 1-year-old, and nary an ounce of sleep.
Oh, and that mean-ole “specialist” that told me that I was going to ruin my children by thinking that I was in any way capable of teaching them.
I have been doing this now for 10 years. And, I still question myself EVERY. BLOOMING. DAY. But, before I go to bed every night, I make a point to list at least one thing that I did RIGHT during the day.
snuggled with them during reading time
came up with another way to explain [this] math concept
another lesson in self-accountability
I was patient
I was firm
I remembered to do a fun project
lengthy, in-depth conversation of economics (a non-favorite of mine)
reminded the kids that they ARE worthy and capable
That is not to say I don’t still run through that nasty list of all the things I did wrong. . .I just make sure it’s not the last thing I’m thinking about before I go to sleep.
I am fortunate in this locale too, as I have fellow homeschoolers to talk to. To toss thoughts and ideas around. To gain reassurance.
Yet, I still feel un-worthy, un-able, not smart enough, not sure. . . and a whole slew of other negatives.
And, all this comes in play, in a big way, a couple of times a year.
Those previous 500 words (meaning, I am not concise) all led to the this: Planning season is very difficult for me, as I frequently wonder if I am making the right decisions.
And, to make things more complicated, there are SO MANY choices!
Oh. My. Goodness!
Which, in the world of Christine, I have a one out of x [number of choices] to pick the right program.
We are talking pain and misery here! Suffering on a large-scale. The gnashing of teeth, and forceful removal of hair.
However, I have experience on my side now. I know that certain program layouts simply will not work for “me”. More importantly, I know that if it won’t work for me, it won’t work for my child, even if it is more their style — because I won’t use it! I know how to modify programs that do work for me, so that they will also work with my children (who have different learning styles / needs).
So, yesterday’s curriculum fair was “successful”. I was pleased with my purchases there. Then, I was able to come home and immediately figure out how to implement them. AND, I woke up this morning still pleased with my purchases.
Not a bad deal!
Oh, and there was a booth at the fair that I skipped. It was a booth of veteran homeschoolers that were offering advice / encouragement / knowledge for those that needed it. It’s a nice idea. . .but, you’ll never catch me volunteering / visiting there!
However, I went to bed troubled last night. I still have to come up with class ideas for our co-op next year. Also, Lit’l Bit’s mom informed me that I was suggested to teach a geography class. I went to sleep . . . with a complex.