Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Putting Back to School Fears to Rest...

I know I'm posting this a bit late - but, hey why not! It is still the first of the school year, and there are bound to be a few people who still have the "new school year" jitters; so here you go! ;)

I came across the following from Annie at Savor this Moment...

"Whenever my kids start school I feel relieved and anxious, or as this article at Dave Ramsey says, Hopeful and Scared.  I want my kids to succeed, but I want them to work hard.  I want them to have fun, but I want them to be responsible.  I want them to challenge their teachers, but I want them to be respectful.  

The author of the post, Dr. Meg Meeker, says:  

 We mustn’t be afraid for our kids, that they’ll get the wrong teacher or not make the team. Some of these are important life-defining moments. More importantly, we must teach them that they are tough enough to handle what life gives them.

That's so hard for me to do, to stand back and maybe "let" them fail.  Is it character building? Most probably. Is it easy on them? Nope. But I'll try not to be a helicopter mom, hovering over and fixing everything. Then maybe they will be independent, capable, and confident kids."

I just want to say THANK YOU to Annie for putting things into perspective for me!

I think both the worries and advice apply equally to home scholars... Homeschooling is a big job for anyone, especially when there are additional factors that make learning challenging - and that can make it easy for fears to creep in jump in with both feet. When I pulled my kids out of school, they were a couple years behind already and I was told they would never catch up. Needless to say, homeschooling has been a HUGE task. Some years have gone magnificently (year before last), others have not (last year). Last year we started a month late and the school year went poorly all year. It was rough. I wanted the kids to finish the studies they didn't finish last year this summer, but I was so busy I never made it happen. Among the occasional chaos, I am thankful for each and every day of faith and optimism coupled with consistency; where would we be without it? :o

This school year one of my sons is starting public High School as a Freshman, and I must resist the temptation to worry or be fearful about the gaps in his education (I didn't follow the public school's order: some things we study sooner, some later; overall I know he is way better off for having home-schooled!... All my worries and fears are really wrapped up on ONE subject - his worst...).

My other boys are finishing their schooling at home. They are determined to finish home school high school at the same time as everyone else despite developmental delays. The fear or worry that they may not learn everything they need to learn to prepare them for the rest of life before they leave home can bring about a very horrible bunch of fears! (I know, who really does learn everything? I need to relax!)

I do have a few ideas which help me to deal with fears... Are you ready for some "Corine philosophy?" ;) OK...

As parents it is our challenge to want much for our kids, without worrying that they won't get it. We have to move forward knowing that sometimes they won't experience what we want them to experience, and sometimes they will struggle and even experience failures. We need to set an example of not fearing failure, so our kids will not allow fear of failure to keep them from trying. And we can't do that if our thoughts are wrapped up in fear! We need to not fear failure!

Yes, I must put all fears to rest, and it needs to happen NOW so I can be a source of strength and encouragement to my sons. So when they do enter a class room or life experience in which they may feel unprepared in some way, they can still hold their heads high with hope and faith that they are tough, and believe or know that they can keep moving forward with confidence. They need to know that the lord (and their parents) don't always expect them to succeed - we just expect them to try... They are smart. They will have to work hard anyhow. That's OK. Perhaps it is a greater blessing for them to have to experience struggling NOW, so when they mature to adulthood they will have already learned that they can do hard things, and do them well! Also, if we fear that a child isn't "ready" for a class or experience in some way, here is a comforting note: They say the best way to make leaders is to throw them into a situation in which they are way over their heads! :) 

How do I diminish fear? I have to replace it with faith and hard work. Faith and fear can not exist in the same space. Faith requires works, and the greatest and FIRST work/step to extinguishing fear is to simply BELIEVE that everything will be OK. I think the formula for success is the same for any goal in life. Once you believe it can be done, all that is left is to simply go forth and work hard as if everything WILL to work out if you do...

PS. I think this year is going to be a good great school year, for the public scholar, as well as the home scholars. :)

Corine :D

No comments:

Post a Comment

There is a ripple effect in all that we do; what you do touches me, what I do touches you...

THANK YOU for your comments; you add so much insight and brighten my day! :)