With the help of my doctor, I had a revelation this week about how to reduce my stress and the rest of the family's stress. I have grown to highly dislike Monday's. Monday evenings are fine with either church or band rehearsal and being able to walk away from a day loaded with stress but the day itself usually makes me want to rip patches of hair out. So......he mentioned an idea in this random conversation, of structuring Monday's to only include the easiest things which do not require tedious one on one work. Eureka! I thought about that and we are only going to read books aloud and practice our instruments and......that's it. If a kid wants to play a little 'catch up' from years of my caring for elders then they can but......not with me unless I'm up to it.
Our weekends are usually full of activities both for the kids, and then husband I try to spend some time on projects or visiting family and friends. No one seems to look forward to the reality of Mondays. I'm emotionally tapped out and overwhelmed. I still have a few kids not reading as well as I would like and then writing ability needs attention with others. We whittle away at this each day and it consumes our lives. I'm determined to quietly be done around two each day and being ok with whatever we accomplished. We need time to breathe and not be on school work duty all the time.
This afternoon I was with one of my kids at the dentist and two moms were discussing how exhausted their kids were with homework til eleven or twelve at night! Yikes. When was childhood robbed by all this schoolwork? I don't want all this stress all day for my kids. On Thursday we finished around two for everyone and everyone went outside and used the swing set and hammock and romped in the woods. I heard my 15 year old exclaim that she hadn't swung on the swing set for forever. Sigh. Sounds like we have been oppressed. Really. I don't want to take their childhood away from them by obsessing over the amount of work they've gotten done. I'm now switching gears to a regular routine with some things like practicing, math, reading instruction and then accepting whichever kids get some work done with me the rest of the day. This is predictably happier. I will know I'm done mid-afternoon and they will experience some freedom each day. Phew. I hope I can make this a lasting plan.