I sit here today after a whirlwind homeschool playdate. It was
blissfully perfect joyfully chaotic and the kids learned twenty facts about Greece at least one true fact about the Olympics, while exploring why taking turns is always fun probably the fastest way to kill a good time.
Somewhere along the way my 2 year old got a cut on the corner of his eye (to go with the tooth that the dentist informed me is "slightly chipped"), my 6 year old daughter cried because she didn't get to be the chariot rider in our completely safe cardboard chariot race, at least one friend felt left out, and I lost count of who ate how many candies.
I started approximately eight conversations with three wonderful adult friends, and finished zero. (Unless you count the unspoken conversation of who would help with what while 10 assorted children made their own pizza bagels, and an 11th child ate baby food on a seat on the floor. )
I'd post pictures from today, but it seemed more important to maintain the slightest bit of control over the kids than to memorialize the haphazard affair. Instead, I'll post an old picture from a more organized and productive outdoor homeschool playgroup from the fall. Ah...isn't that cute?
Parenting does not seem to be getting easier, for those who were wondering. And I LOVE that we are homeschooling- but that doesn't mean I've figured it out. By a long shot. Or that I don't have bad days.
Lately it seems I'm better at doing the me goals in my life than the parenting goals. I managed to get tacky glue in my hair yesterday while working on a pinata, awhile back I gave a kid a bag of frozen brocoli for an "injury" and I'm still wondering if I'm going to find that bag behind a couch or under a bed next year, and I can't seem to keep my own circumstantial annoyances from affecting how I respond to my kids.
Sometimes the harder I try to plan fun things for my kids, the more I forget that my kids are who I'm supposed to be doing the fun things for. I end up in the dollar store buying party things, getting irritated with their childish impatience, more worried about the number of party favors for each kid than whether my newly 5 year old boy is enjoying today.
I try to clean the house to get ready for events, and wind up yelling at the boys for trying to have fun with the sheets from my room. The nerve. I don't think that was worth me going all Hulk on them.
Ah well. I
think desperately hope most parents feel this tension too. For those who have been through it or are muddling in the middle, I'd love if you would share your stories of being in the fray, wrestling with choosing to value kids over events and fun over perfectionism.
In the meantime, I'll just quote from my favorite childhood book series, Anne of Green Gables:
“Isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?”