Thursday, March 11, 2010

It's a Penis Not the Plague...

These are the words that often run through my mind. Vance is in the stage of the free spirit. The age when diapers are cumbersome and air flowing in the nether regions is preferred. I've been here before, it's seems like a million times now and I still don't know how to address the subject. When Ryleigh and Keely were here I tried to take the "It's no big deal" approach (Naked in Rain boots), but now Vance is bearing his yankee doodle and the girls are either too curious for my taste or completely disgusted.  

I admit that I probably do not stress modesty enough, but there are few things more adorable than a newborn moon, or a toddler one for that matter, and for this reason I am not quick to react when little ones become unclad.  The girls however, are expeditious to point and scream "Ewwww" as they run from the room.  Vance is quite impressed by his newly discovered power that his appendage yields.  It's at this point that I intercede and grab a giggling boy and rescue two screeching girls.  I try to be matter-of-fact regarding the situation, and for the most part I believed my approach was working well for everyone, that I was presenting a healthy view of the body parts God has gifted us.  That was until a few weeks ago.  As I wrestled a diaper on to the little man, I tried again to tell the girls that it's not funny or gross, but it's they way God made boys, that it is his body, his private area, his penis.  Vance stopped squirming and stared at me.  I pointed and repeated, "your penis."  To which Vance struggled to lift his over-sized head off the couch to look down and replied, "Ewwww."  I surely hope Brian and I can afford therapy for all the kids one day. 

(Originally written in Jan. 2010)

Friday, March 5, 2010

I Quit!

I Quit!  I hate homeschooling!  I hate the time it takes from my day.  I hate how hard it is to motivate my kids.  I hate how far behind I am with life.  I hate how hard this is.  I hate how my children don't seem to get it.  And I hate how I feel inside when they don't.  I hate the tiny Erica inside of me that is screaming curse words and hurtful things at her children.  I hate it.  I'm done!

That was the post I began yesterday.  I never finished it because other, "more important", things came up.  At this moment I can't even remember what they were but I'm sure I wasn't pleased.  It was a bad day yesterday.  A day where I wanted to climb back in bed and go to sleep and wake up a better person.  Unfortunately, life doesn't go that way, especially when you have kids.  I sulked. I barked. I was mean.  And even though I never said those things I was screaming on the inside, I'm sure my face said it all.  Poor children from my womb...I can be such a beast - a big hairy, ugly, smelly beast.  Yet they seemed oblivious.  They still danced around, climbed on my lap, and clambered up to give me a kiss.  I guess they didn't realize that they aren't invited to my pity parties.  Yet even their party crashing didn't change me, I still seethed.

It wasn't until later when I was speaking to another homeschooling mom that I was encouraged.  She told me the same things other moms had been telling me for months - try block learning.   (Block learning is where you just do all the required weekly lessons for a particular subject in one day).  This method of teaching sounds appealing to me, but I have also been told that certain subjects should be taught every day.  So, I chimed in that I couldn't do it because I was told Math and Spelling should be done everyday.  Her reply gave me tremendous hope.  She said, "You are homeschooling, Erica.  You do whatever works for you."  Why at that moment the clouds parted, I'm not sure.  I haven't even tried it yet, but I didn't dread starting the day as much.  I think it might actually work for me - for us.  I spoke with the kids about it today and they seemed excited too.  So on Monday we start our new schedule, maybe homeschooling attempt #547 will work.  Fingers are crossed and instead of quitting...I'm pushing on!