Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I'm Not Perfect

I'm not perfect. Are you surprised? For some reason I always am. I am a first born child and, as I recently read in The New Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are by Kevin Leman that I borrowed from the library, that means I am prone to perfectionism. There is a problem with that since (surprise, surprise) I am not perfect. My constant realization of that fact causes me to often live a discouraged life. I am not a perfect follower of Christ, I am not a perfect wife, I am not a perfect mom, I am not a perfect housekeeper, I am not a perfect homeschool teacher. The list could go on forever but the one that I have really been struggling with lately is the last one I mentioned.

At the beginning of school I was super excited because we were starting early (which means we get to get done early!) and because we started a new curriculum (Sonlight) that looked so exciting. The first few weeks of school went well then we lost steam. I had been warned that it was pretty much impossible to check all of the boxes in Sonlight but I didn't know what boxes not to check and soon got overwhelmed at the fact that I hadn't gotten all the boxes checked. I got so frustrated that I wanted to give up. In my head it is all or nothing and since all is often really difficult, if not impossible, to be all I hide under the covers and do nothing. That is not really an option in real life and I often need help to bring myself out of that slump. I sought God and got some advice from Glenn and a couple of wise friends. The conclusion I have come to is that it is OK if we are not all on the same week. It is OK if we finish after the first week of May (public school doesn't get out around here until the end of June anyway). Also I decided that I needed to add to Caleb's workload because the curriculum that I have chosen for him is way too easy and it has given him too much free time to cause trouble and distract his sisters. I had found a book called Plants Grown Up from Doorposts at my aunt's house when I was helping her sort stuff and she let me have it. I decided to start working through it with Caleb. He's got school learning down pretty well. I want to focus more on character training with him.

We started it yesterday with each kid on a different "week" of our curriculum. It didn't go perfect but that is ok (honestly, it is!). This morning I made a list of what each kid needed to do on our whiteboard and told them that they needed to have all of their initials erased before they could be free. I think that that will be helpful. It is going to take some time to get back on track again because we kind of got out of the habit of getting serious amounts of school work done everyday when I was hiding under the covers.

I am thankful for God's grace and that His mercies that are new every morning and that He loves me and chooses to use me even though I am not perfect.

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