Today is a day marked with mixed emotions as I send my older two children off to school. Next week #3 and #4 head off to preschool as well. It has been a brilliant summer–one of new experiences (belonging to a pool and swim team!) and adventures (to the caverns, to Maine, to museums and theme parks!) I love having my kids home. I call myself a wannabe-homeschooler because I send my kids to school during the year, but then summer is my chance to put some teaching/learning ideas into practice. We share good times, see the world together.
While the summer has been grand and full, however, I must admit that our most recent days have been stressful ones. A few of our children have been going through transitional phases simultaneously, putting our family in turmoil and making us look, at times, like a parody. Parenting is no joke, people. I am living that mantra as we sort through issues and attempt to steer our crew on the straight and narrow. This is no easy task. Among the kids there is fighting and terse words, hitting and lots of whining. Who’s kids are these? Add in late summer bedtimes and excessive sleep deprivation. Add in more sibling conflict and feistiness. Add in their ages and points of development… And boy does today start to feel more like a reason to celebrate than it does a reason to cry! We need BIG spaces in our togetherness right now. Today is the kind of day when I am grateful for the option school provides our family. Frankly, it is the option to get away from one another for a few hours and we’ll take it!
Yet isn’t she one of those Princeton moms who’s supposed to have the perfect family? Have it all together? Get along and sing Kumbaya?
I know I’ve said this to you before, but here’s a reminder: I don’t. My family doesn’t.
So let’s stop pretending. The Facebook, Pinterest, Blog-perfection sort of image we’re all after–can we please just throw it out the window for a second and be REAL with one another? We’d all do ourselves a favor by not trying so hard to measure up.
This journey is hard. Parenting is not easy.
It’s been so challenging lately that I’m willing to admit I’m ready for a change.
“My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. He is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be shaken. On God my salvation and my glory rest; the rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.” Psalm 62:5-7 h/t Tim Tebow via Twitter
I love my children beyond measure. I entrust our family to the Lord. And today I celebrate the spaces in our togetherness. Without them, none of us would be at his best.