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Things are Just Peachy

Confession.  Things are not peachy.

This week has been hard.

The kind of hard that makes you open a second bottle of wine and scroll Facebook to enjoy the perception of everyone’s green grass.

The kind of hard that makes you doubt yourself.  That’s the worst kind of hard in my opinion.

Monday, I felt guilty.  We had our first day of homeschooling.  However, we also sent dear hubby on a two-week long business trip for the first time since the move.

I was a wreck.  Did we do math and reading and vocabulary and spelling?

All the yesses.

Did I also allow my ten-year-old to hug and love on me as we binge watched a Netflix dance show? 

Yes.

My kids ate leftover pizza and cereal for dinner. 

Even my dogs seemed disappointed with Monday.

Y’all (I stole that one from the south), I cried over terrible teen Netflix acting.  Then, I sat up until one a.m. doubting all the choices I’ve recently made.

Tuesday and Wednesday improved marginally, but we still struggled through finding a routine and balance.

Today, as I contemplated how everything would go, I was feeling like I had a handle on things.  I had a great assignment planned, something for the boy to do that was more meaningful than math review, and so many aspirations of how the day would end.

I was wrong.

My fabulous assignment was very lackluster and met with zero enthusiasm from both hooligans.  It also produced mediocre work from two very smart children (who I know, for a fact, would have given ten thousand times more effort to a teacher who wasn’t their mom).

Then, I find one of those notes. 

Teacher friends, you know “the note.” 

The one that a frustrated student writes on a paper and then erases or scribbles out.  The kind of note they want you to find, even though they wanted to hide it.

“I don’t know anything.”

Written and erased.  By an incredibly intelligent almost thirteen-year-old, who, without a doubt, knows a whole lot of everything.

Talk about feeling like a teacher failure. 

Last year he ranked third in his entire grade level according to the school, and this year he’s writing notes that say, “I don’t know anything.”

Epic teacher/mom failure.

How was I to know that only one teacher to his recollection has EVER even asked him to annotate a text?  I assumed that since I made my fourth graders do it, he just needed some memory jogging to take off running.

Spoiler alert, that was not true.

Welcome to figuring out how to teach your own children in grade levels you’ve never taught.

After doing damage control with that situation, I dropped off the dancer girl to her first ever class here in the south.  She fretted the entire day because she overdid the backflips a couple of days ago and has been super sore. 

She spent all day worrying about how she would do at dance while being so sore and the entire car ride to dance chewing on her fingernails.

Then, to top things off, I had to send her in and drive away.  I mean, I COULD stand outside in the humidity and heat and stare through the window, but that seems to send off a creepy mom vibe, so I’ll refrain.

Now, I’m sitting in an empty Starbucks drinking a burned tasting decaf latte as I try to gather my thoughts about the week.  (Don’t even comment about the decaf.  I’ve seriously got to sleep sometime tonight…but if this is what decaf tastes like, count me out forever.)

So here it goes…

Perception versus Reality

My perception: Homeschooling this week was a disaster, and I have no idea what I’m doing.

The truth: Both of my kids did more than seven math lessons already this week and have read several chapters out of novels.  They’ve practiced typing and learned new vocabulary.  If they had actually gone to school this week, I promise you there would have been very little curriculum being taught.  They would have spent the time learning classroom rules, practicing how to line up or go from class to class, what to do in case of a fire drill or lockdown, as well as hours-worth of time playing get-to-know-you games and signing syllabus requirements.  So, I supposed they’re no worse off than they would have been.

My perception: Everyone around me thinks I’ve lost my marbles for attempting homeschooling.

The truth: The weird guy who looked at me funny as my ten-year-old drove the golf cart past his house is an ex-convict.  (That’s true, but a story for another time.)  I don’t actually care what he thinks about me homeschooling my kids.  Shoot, I don’t even care if he thinks my kids are just truancy cases.  Whatevs.  In reality, I was being an awesome mom AND teacher, because we spent almost an hour at our community center so the dancer could dance in the empty space and the boy could use the workout room. Which, by the way, he asked to go do again tomorrow, so win-win. I also know there are many people who do NOT think I’m crazy, so maybe I’ll just block everyone on Facebook and in real life who thinks I’m crazy and go on living our unconventional little life.

My perception: I’m a terrible stay-at-home-mom.  I’ve been staying up until midnight, sleeping in until eight or nine, and generally not doing a whole lot.

The truth: My kids, dogs, and plants are still alive, and I haven’t burned the house down yet.  (Although we did have the fire brigade come visit us over the weekend and had to evacuate the house, but that’s yet another story.)  I’m actually doing a whole lot, although so much of it is mental that it’s just draining.  I’m learning how to teach two grade levels above anything I’ve taught before, as well as learning a new state’s standards and expectations.  I’m also trying to write some of my own curriculum, figure out how to use Google Classroom and Google Slides so my kids don’t fall behind on techie stuff, as well as the whole cooking, cleaning, laundering thing.  So, I suppose I’m doing more than it first appears.

My perception: Since we’ve moved, things just seem…off.  I don’t remember feeling like this the last time we moved half-way across the country, so what am I doing wrong this time?

The truth: We moved more than 2,000 miles to another region of the country.  Things are not going to be just peachy right away.  (See what I did there?  At least I haven’t lost my sense of humor or use of ridiculous puns.) 

So…

By the time I post this, I’ll have picked up the dancer girl, delivered ice cream and a Starbucks brownie to the boy, and settled in for the night.  I’ll watch something ridiculous on Netflix, yell at my dogs for barking at the lizards in my screened-in porch, and I’ll leave this for all of you to read.

I’m not sure what tomorrow or next week will bring, but this much I know…

I’m definitely never ordering decaf anything ever again.

Be grateful, water your own grass,

…and drink coffee.  Regular caffeinated coffee.

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8 Comments

  1. Decaf & Angie =sad days and disappointment 😆
    However, I’m so proud of you! For all of this. It’s an incredible journey, but not perfect. We’ll say “imperfectly-perfect “. You deserve the late night, sleeping in, and everything else you have going on. Love you all!

    1. You are amazing, brave, smart, and incredibly capable. You put into words all the things that we are all struggling with on an emotional level. I sit here with ugly tears as I read all my own feelings in this. I am so scared of what crazy decisions I made that brought me athousamd miles from “home”, but you did it too… and well, you give me hope. I know you will succeed and outshine the whole state of Georgia, I hope you don’t mind that borrow a a little of that shine for myself when I read your blog and FB posts.

  2. My heart aches for you and wish I was closer to give you a much needed hug and to tell you that things will get better ( I don’t know this for sure but know you will figure it out because I know you are an awesome mom and teacher). Know that I love you and trying to send some good vibes your way. Love you.

  3. You are amazing! And I tried decaf once……. I wish I could have saved you from that! Lol!!! Besides the curriculum, your kids are going to learn so many life skills being home, skills that are not taught in a traditional classroom. You got this! Your kids (and hubby) …(and dogs) …(and cat) are so lucky to have you!

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