Sunday, August 13, 2006

I am tired. I am an unschooler.

Reading a couple of homeschool blogs recently has made me tired.

I get tired reading about all the marvellous things that others are doing with their children. All the fabulous read aloud times.

All the curriculum talk.

I started reading about a
Latin-Centred Curriculum.

It is *so* not me.

I moved over to
a Thomas Jefferson Education.

Hello?? Where would I begin to label my children - core? scholar? love of learning stage?

No, better to stick with what I know best. Living and learning. Unschooling. Relaxed homeschooling. Or lovin' life.

However, I am failing even this.

One son is going through a "argue with mum" stage. The didactic stage of the Trivium? Or perhaps the rhetoric stage?

But I am failing at being a good sounding board. He and I are just not connecting as we should. Youth Group at church is also not helping - to be frank,it is a pain in the butt right now.

I am tired.

Okay, unschooling is about living together. But why do I just want to curl up with a good book and tell everyone to go away?

A failed unschooler. A tired homeschooler.

I think I'll read some unschooling blogs.

I think I'll pray.

I think I'll eat some ice cream and catch a movie with my husband.

I think I'll smile and enjoy my children and our lives.


Faith said...

Hi Leonie,

Prayer is good. Eating ice cream and watching a movie is good. We can't be ON 24/7 and that is what it seems like everyone else is if we read blogs all the time. They can make me envious! Which is not a good thing. You probably just need a break from being on. You sound like your family is very busy. Sometimes a break from busy-ness is the order of the day.



Karen said...

An Aquaintance and I were once talking about homeschooling in April (a pivital tired month for me). She was relating how she listens to others great stories of homeschooling projects and then tries to implement them. Not just one project, all of them. We laughed at how crazy we can get trying to do the best for our children. One day at time, serving our Lord is all he wants (My own mantra). He even says he likes us best when we are at our weakest. So just think of God with a big grin on face when you come to him in prayer. Put your head in his lap and rest, He loves it.

Marie said...

Hi Leonie,

How many unschoolers are going to blog about the day they sat around, accomplished one chore, had junk all over the house, fast food for meals and dc watched cartoons all day?

Everyone puts forward (I believe) things that make them feel good about what they do. I don't know anyone who feels good about their endeavors every day.

I go for interesting minutes in our days, not interesting days.

Cindy said...

Hi Leonie-

Are you like me in that I fall into 'all or nothing' thinking sometimes? I had a bad week last week and things looked dim. I forgot that they do get better. Maybe down times are God's way of helping us slow down a bit.

You are doing fine. Today's scripture said a lot to me about this, too. Manna in the desert.

You are not failing...just in a trough - where we have all been.

God Bless,

WJFR said...

I'll pray with you, Leonie. You put some of my own feelings into words. For me, I know that part of it is seeing the fascinating plans everyone is making. I used to absolutely LOVE planning -- so much so that I'm tempted now to make the plans and then ignore them -- which is usually what I end up doing anyway, only this time I will resolve not to feel guilty about it : D.

Wish I had some advice for you. You and Cindy have told me in the past that the lulls are part of it, too. The prayers sound like a great idea. and just connecting with the family... "being there".

Even the structured schoolers have those blah times... I know that from experience : ).

Anonymous said...


I'm sorry you're struggling! I agree that these struggles are times God uses to ultimately strengthen us. Persevere. I think the answers will come.

I've been noticing something here in my corner of the world lately. While I appreciate all the online support there is out there, lately with life circumstances severely limiting my ability to stay connected to all that support, in strange ways I find that I feel stronger about the way we are schooling. I think it is the comparing and thinking in the subtlest of ways that if I don't match everyone else somehow I'm doing it wrong. In this absence of connection to people, I'm just doing it my way. It seems fine. Actually it seems good. Despite being tired as well, I actually oddly feel more secure than I have in a long time that I'm headed in the right direction school wise. I think that removal from all the wonderful support out there sometimes gives you a chance to find your own feet. Maybe even for a homeschooling expert like you? I suppose everyone must need to cycle through and find a new individual direction every so often.

I will pray for you that you find the strength God is trying to send you in this moment of weakness, Leonie.

God Bless,


Krisann said...

Hi Leonie,

I have been homeschooling for more than 12 years and have felt the way you are feeling now many times during those years. :-) You are not alone.

I will pray with you and remember... this too shall pass. :)


Cindy said...

What great words I am hearing from these comments. Leonie, see you are adding to other's lives by sharing yours.. even when things are not perfect.... :)

I read Richelle's comments and have kind of been in the same place. One reason I put my blog on hold at times. I also finally limited myself to just reading a few blogs. Come to think of it they are blog of people I know really really well.. so when they talk of things they do, I know of some of things they don't do, too.. lol it helps me. It helps me remember they are real.

And like Richelle, I love my online support. But this past week or two I have been so busy with life here that i have spent less surfing the blogs and do feel more at home with who we are and where we are going.

Willa, I love your idea of planning, then ignoring! lol! Like writing that letter then sailing it down the river...

Prayers and hugs to all... maybe it is time for Homeschoolers Annonymous group! Actually I decided this year not even to call myself a homeschooler. Not an unschooler either. We just live and learn. Lots less pressure that way.

God Bless,

Susan <> said...

Hi Leonie,


Oh boy, I can *so* relate...even in my own little corner of the world.

I too, am a relaxed unschooler who is even having a Sabbath season yet there are times when I struggle with how much we are seeming to learn but even more importantly, with how well our relationships are going.

More than academics, I feel like I'm failing with my relaionships - maybe I'm not...maybe it's the changing nature of them but I feel like I'm behind the ball.

How can other mums have everything so together and I'm still wandering around, chasing my tail?

I'm with you! Watch a movie, eat ice-cream (for me it is parmesan cheese or chocolate) and build a webpage. ~smile~

In my prayers and thoughts,
Susan <><

Leonie said...

Hey guys, thank you so much. I just got on the computer, to eat breakfast and read email before we go out to band practice - and you all made my day. :-)

I think its hormones and tiredness. And definitely prayer has helped - I spent ages just praying in church last night.

And I ate some ice cream ( Weight Watchers! lol!) and went to a movie last night - dh and I saw Miami Vice...

Today is another day. I'm gonna smile more and read only the blogs of friends.

Cindy said...

Sending more hugs, Leonie!

Thinking.. your one post on being overwhelmed probably helped others spiritually and emotionally more than a dozen of the other blog posts out there on neat things people are doing. God is good.

I like hearing what people do... and know this is part of my journey to learn to garner but not compare. Oh that compare. I read a wonderful piece by CS Lewis on pride I hope to post somewhere soon. Maybe I will post it here and on UC now that I am temporiily blog-less.. :)

But it really made me think and get to the root of my pridefulness. Sometimes I think it is all about pride and then I know I really need God's help.

Hugs for you and all who posted. Love you ladies.

God Bless,

p.s does anyone else besides me find it a really challege to get the validation letters entered correctly to post on blogspot? Especially before coffee or at 2am! lol

Leonie said...

Cindy, I'd love to read that piece by C S Lewis, if you have time to share.

And ikwym re the blog verification - if it is late ( or early) and I am too tired, I look at the letters/numbers - and keep making typos. :-)

Fr. Benedict M. said...

I hope the movie two needed it!

Leonie said...

Thanks Fr - it is probably a not recommended film ! But the time out was cool and I am back to normal - we all have these little hiccups. :-)

Kristin said...

Hurray for you, Leonie! First of all, I just love the happy ending to this post that we all can relate to, whether we admit it or not! Thanks so much for sharing ... and know that you're not a failure and you're not alone! May God's love and peace fill your heart and your home.

Leonie said...

Kristen - your comment made me feel better about venting on my blog. I *was feeling a bit dumb - post blogging angst .

Karen E. said...

I'm so glad you vented here and that you got so many great comments in response.

I think we all go through it ... sometimes we're just tired. Tired of being everything to everyone, and I think it can be a very *good* thing to pull back and tell everyone to go away for awhile while you read a book and pray. :-)

Then, we can come back to living life with more joy. Sometimes, when I try to be *too* brave during a burnout time, I become even more burned out, if that makes sense.