Monday, November 5, 2012

In Order To Thrive

Josh had coffee with an old friend several weeks ago.

He came home refreshed and motivated, as he typically does after a good catch-up with a friend.

One thing just really stuck out to Josh that his friend, Ed, said.

Ed's family had made some big life changes for their family and the reasoning behind it was to help their family thrive!  Not that their prior choices were sinful or wrong, but because they needed to make a change for the better of their family as a whole.

That got Josh thinking about our family.

Things have been a bit tense around here lately.  The dynamic in our household tends to be stressed and we don't want that for our family.  With a mother who struggles with anxiety, and a son who is following all too closely in her footsteps, not to mention the added stresses of attachment issues with another and many learning issues...something needed to give.

When we first began to homeschool it was out of necessity.  We were traveling so much that our children would flunk out of school solely based on lack of attendance:)

Then, the adoption stuff happened and we were forced, again, to just stick with the plan.

I really struggled with homeschooling at first.  I didn't feel very qualified and had to force myself out of my own comfort zone to be the teacher my kids needed.  Plus I knew NOTHING about homeschool.  I went to private and public schools my whole life, so I felt like I was going into it blind.

Josh was homeschooled from middle school on so he was very positive about the decision to homeschool, but never made me feel like that was the only option.

This year rolled around and we decided, once again, to give homeschooling a go.  I was really beginning to get the hang of it and was actually ENJOYING teaching my kids.

But this year proved to be more than I could handle with all of the special attention Zeke needed.  Not to mention that my school had doubled in size!  He was happy being at home, but he wasn't THRIVING and we were determined to get him the help he needed.

I felt like I couldn't catch my breathe most days.  Having a child with special needs is exhausting because you have to be SO consistent!  Even more so than the average child.  I'm not complaining, I'm just stating the fact.  So I felt spent, drained and like I just had nothing more to give.  No time to "fill back up" in order to overflow onto my family.  I was not THRIVING.

And you know what they say, "If the mama ain't happy...".

So, Josh, after this new-found insight came to me very lovingly and released me from homeschooling.  Not that he was holding me back at all, but I just needed to hear, from him, that HE believed in me and that it was okay to put Zeke in school.

Not many people go from homeschooling a child with learning disabilities to actually putting them in school for help, so it was quite a process, but we did it.

I'm not going to lie, part of me felt like I had failed in some way.  Like I was giving up by just handing them off to the public school system.  But on the other hand I felt freedom in letting go, in order to try something that may be even better!  It sure doesn't seem like it now, but Zeke and Rainy are going to THRIVE at school.  Zeke's TA is a believer and so is his special resources teacher.  They are trained at what they do and I am anxious to see them help my boy THRIVE!

Now, a week in, and I get excited to go pick Rainy and Zeke up in the afternoon, I have special time with the 3 littlest colony members, I have a naptime to get work done around the house again AND running errands only takes a fraction of the time with 3 as opposed to 5, ha!

So, for now, in this season, this is what we needed to do to thrive!

Is there something you need to change in order to help your family thrive?  It's not easy letting go of the idea of life that is in your head, but something BETTER could be waiting for you just around the corner...
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