To all my fellow new homeschool moms, give yourself grace. No one knows what they’re doing, but we’re all doing the best we can.
“I can’t do this!”
“How am I supposed to get any work done?”
“I can’t even hear myself think!!”
“Is it too early for a glass of wine?”
If you could read my thoughts today, on our first day of official “distance learning” while social distancing, that’s what was going through my brain.
Judging from all the wine glass photos on social media today, I’m not the only one struggling with my new role as homeschool mom.
I see you my fellow newbie homeschool mamas.
I know you want this to work. I know you’re excited. I know you’re trying your best.
I see your colorful calendars and daily schedules.
Your cheerfully decorated workspaces designed to make each kid feel special.
We all started this week with such good intentions and high hopes.
But this is uncharted territory…
For the first ten minutes of our school day, I felt an overwhelming sense of pride and excitement, watching my 5-year old connect with her class on Google Hangouts.
Look at my baby go!! Such a big girl!! So cute to watch them giggle, wave, and catch up with each other. We can do this!!
Did you feel it too??
It’s really cool to see what our kids actually do at school and see them interact with their teachers and friends.
It gave me hope.
I felt like a champ.
And then it started.
“Mom what’s this?”
“Hey mom, can you help me with this?”
“What does this mean mom?”
“How do I do this mom?”
Every time I tried to start on my own work, another question.
This wasn’t going to be easy.
I mean, I didn’t expect it to be easy…but I didn’t expect it to be this hard either.
How in the heck am I supposed to get anything done when I have to guide my kindergartener through an entire day of classwork, help my middle schooler with projects for 5 different classes, and keep a toddler occupied.
(Side note: yes my husband is here and yes he is helpful. But it’s still a LOT!!!)
The stress mounted quickly.
I felt my shoulders tense.
Stress. (That’s me, not my kids)
Discouragement. (Me again)
My kids were doing anything bad — they actually did awesome!
I’m sure yours did too!
I loved seeing them rock it out on this new distance learning thing!! Gaining independence and self-motivation. Learning to use technology in a new way (not just for games!)
But it’s a LOT for us parents.
It’s a lot of extra work.
A lot of extra time.
And time is something that we moms never seem to have enough of to begin with!
I recognize all the work that the teachers have put into this too.
I know that this is all new and strange for them. It’s hard to maintain a classroom feeling when you’re separated by distance and only see each other face to face on the chaotic jumble of kids faces that is Google Hangouts or Zoom.
I can tell that the schools are trying to assign a reasonable amount of work for us to handle, to not overburden parents and families.
I appreciate our teachers being flexible and understanding as we all try to get this technology set up and figure out what the school day will look like from now on.
I also appreciate my fellow bloggers, especially the activity and educational bloggers who have provided so many of these *FREE* activities that our teachers are sending our way.
Still…it’s a lot of work for us moms.
And I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t overwhelmed and frustrated.
We already “do it all” and now moms have to teach school too
I don’t have to explain to you, my fellow moms, why this situation is so stressful.
Moms already carry the mental load of the family.
We remember birthdays and anniversaries.
What is needed for school parties and sports practices.
When bills are due.
We kiss boo-boos and read bedtime stories.
Many of us work outside them home, supporting our families financially.
Those that stay at home do equally as much work — studies show that if you added up all the things a SAHM does in a year, her salary would be $162,000.
Now add full-time teacher to that list.
Again, I’m not trying to take anything away from our teachers. They’re working hard making assignments, uploading them, and trying to keep order in a crazy situation. All while dealing with their own worries and stress.
But there’s just no way around the fact that distance learning from home adds another burden to moms. Because realistically, a kindergartener isn’t going to tell themselves what to do all day.
And even older kids have questions and need help.
If the world was peachy right now, I think we could all handle this with no problem.
But we’re all stuck at home. And the world is not peachy.
Worried about friends and family.
What will happen next.
Are our jobs secure?
How will all of our bills get paid?
How long will all this last???
Nobody does their best work when their worried and stressed.
But believe it or not my fellow new homeschool moms, we ARE doing our best work!
The world we’re living in right now is crazy. It’s truly an unprecedented time for our generation.
Give yourself grace.
Give yourself grace.
One more time for the people in the back and to make sure everyone gets the message…
Moms…give yourself grace.
There’s no way that our kids are going to get the same kind of education they did before.
But they’re learning NEW things now. Learning about technology and virtual meetings. Learning about the intricacies of our interconnected world. They’re probably watching a lot more news these days.
Maybe they’ve been helping you in the kitchen, learning to cook.
Perhaps you took them outside to work in the garden.
Have you been going for walks together? Playing in the backyard? Exercising as a family?
There is a lot more than just traditional book learning when it comes to education.
If you’re interacting with your kids and trying to teach them, you’re doing awesome.
Are you keeping them safe at home?
You’re doing what needs to be done.
Are you working from home, trying to start up a side hustle, and/or supporting your husband while he transitions to working from home?
You’re absolutely rocking this!!
This is all crazy and sometimes we’re going to feel crazy.
But I promise, it’s going to be ok.
You’re doing ok.
Actually you’re doing more than ok!!
Oh, and it’s ok to have that glass of wine!!
Cheers to all my fellow homeschool moms.
We’ve got this.
Be kind to yourself.
Be kind to others.
Now on to day 2….
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