12 August 2010

I didn't get back to tell you about the million and one things going on in our lives and the pictures I promised are not taken because a certain someone was using my desk key and locked it into the desk where the camera is. Once we get it open again, he can go ride his bike and take lots of animal pictures for me to post.

But as to why I haven't been back on here. . .where to start?
My son is not doing well. The changes, the new routines that aren't fully routine yet, the newness in general, the probability of needing meds changed...
My daughter has been having varying allergic reactions to foods and dryer sheets and mystery things about twice a week...
My mischief maker is still being mischievous...
My smallest one is slowly making it's presence known with subtle movements and large belly (one of those pics I mentioned will be a belly shot, okay?). I have to slow down because the stress around the house has me worrying about the baby....
And me, I'm just a blubber face in the midst of it all. No longer coping on any level, and now faced with tough decisions.

As in, I want to home school my kids. I find it rewarding, even on the hard days. And less stressful than worrying about my son's behavior in public school or my daughter's potential allergic reactions because of carelessness in a classroom (which is frighteningly common).

But today when I expressed the concern about the stress and the baby to Little B's psychologist, she immediately suggested putting him back in public school for at least one term while we finish getting settled. I'm not sure how I feel about it. She told me she'd bring it up to him, which is fine - when I suggested it recently (quite seriously) his eyes bulged and his nostrils flared and he was appalled, acting as though I'd suggested he be thrown in jail.

On the way home, he brought it up, saying he wanted to try. I really like the psychologist, but am not overly happy with some of the things she said to encourage this. As we talked, he wavered back and forth: public, home, public, home. . .I told him he needed to make a list for each and to pray.

I understand that his last year's experience is something he needs to overcome, but really it's more than a year - it's all his years. And I understand he could potentially make more friends, but he could potentially be an outcast and desperately lonely and angry, something I find more likely with his history. I also understand that he would need special classes and have more hours of actual work. I know the battles that used to ensue about homework. There will be so much more in 4th grade. And if he goes, I will not fight him over it. I'd rather let him fail. Call me a lousy mother. I'm beyond caring at the moment.

And I know that I would have fewer hours of one on one stress with him for a while. Which is the one and only upside to enrolling him in my book. I confess: I don't find him very likable right now. I'd rather lay in my bed and weep than talk to him or look at him. I hate myself for feeling that way.

I have his new Sonlight books for our home school year. I have the current math we're partway through ready to resume, as well as the free online Spanish lessons, the typing course planned for the computer we are supposed to buy in a couple weeks. I've got a homeschool group we're planning to join with friends we already know. I have a cool writing class online that I want to enroll him in for 8 weeks - though he hates 'controlled writing' - I simply said he'd always be average and never excel in it if he couldn't learn to listen and follow directions....and that's his choice. The thing is - he has amazing potential. Amazing. It kills me to see the lazy streak so strong. But he has to choose for himself, too. So many things I look forward to, things I can tweak at home, that will be set in stone in school.

But I need to pray. And listen. And curl up and sleep for 100 hours. Maybe when I wake up someone else will have made the decisions for me.

6 comments:

Mrs Lemon said...

Oh.My.WORD. Did you write that about your son or my stepdaughter? the lazy is strong with that one, coupled with intense (and deliberate) discouragement from her mother for all these years for anything school-related. She's excited about starting the year here in our school district though, and has already had her first victory over something her mom told her she "couldn't do" - she can unlock and use her combination lock!

So, I said that to ask, what's stopping you from doing the online class at home to supplement his school work? That way you still get the hands on training that you find rewarding, and you also get the emotional break that you desperately need?

cjoy said...

Ah, the online class is something I'm letting HIM decide on - and I can assure you that he will NOT want to do any extra work if he goes back to public school. Hands down....he's an awesome writer, but resists being told to do it. I think he'd like this (offers ONLY positive feedback from instructors and other kids and is a fun/silly story he has to write each week) but if he is already getting assignments from another teacher/source, it ain't gonna happen. No way no how no sir. He's already uncertain. The regular curriculum we will use has writing built into, but I can adjust as needed as we go along...and that means that during those 8 weeks of the online course I could skip the other if necessary.

This is where I love h.school SO much - we tweak when and where and how we need to. We even change curriculum mid-year if it will make school smoother for us. I WANT to keep him here....the stress of waiting to hear if he yelled at the teacher or got suspended or expelled is way worse than a battle over an assignment in h.school to me...but I know I need some kind of break. I wish there was a compromise. (He asked if he could go to school 3 days a week and h.school the other 2...if only...)

Hannah said...

I'm having a lot of similar deliberations, although not with the intensity of yours, and not compounded by a move and pregnancy! Lately I've really been wondering what to do with Ian for the fall. I just can't get inspired. He's been at day camp all day every day this week and I've missed him, but it's also been an emotional weight off my shoulders to have him gone and busy. I've been asking the Lord to show me what to do without any preconceived notions on my part about what's best for him and for us. I'll pray for the same for you. Let's just lift each other up!

blue hose said...

You know, my SIL teaches at a school where they go to school MWF and are home schooled T&Th. It may be possible, but probably only a private school setting. I'm sorry things are going so rough. It will get better - it has to! :) We still love you at this end.

Laurel said...

My situation is different but similar in many regards. We enrolled our almost six year old in public kindergarten when we NEVER planned on schooling outside the home at this age. It's hard, so hard, and I get sad at this periodically every day. But then I have relief as well. Seriously, how come this parenting this is so friggin' hard. I'm sorry you're in a similar boat - I wish it could be easier at least for SOMEBODY out there!!!!

StephieAnne said...

I am so impressed with your transparency and honesty. Having you actually be willing to share the struggles of your heart has got to be such a blessing for all of the moms who are struggling in such a similar way.

I remember getting together with some college friends at the same time my son was just starting public school kindergarten. A couple of the moms in our group homeschooled, and very much questioned my reasoning for sending my son off to the "pit of hell" (Yes, those words were used). It was such a horrible night where I felt like I was being attacked, yet I also felt like John and I's hearts had clearly been led to the decision to enroll him where we did.

That experience really taught me just how unique every child is and their individual needs are in terms of education. (Not to mention the family dynamics and what would be best for everyone). My sister homeschooled her son up until 3rd grade, and then she felt very right about sending him off to public school. In hindsight, what a profound decision she made, as he has mild dyslexia, and to have Michele teach him the fundamentals of reading, one on one, was huge. God is good to honor each person's struggles in this kind of decision, and I'll be praying you find that same peace with your decision.

Also, CONGRATS on the baby GIRL on the way!!!!!