This morning, my mom came over to sit with my kids while I did some errands. When I got home, she could tell something was wrong.
“I’m so discouraged!” I whined. I went on to tell her how frustrating it is for homemakers of my generation to see homemakers of her generation (and before) and try to figure out how they did it all! The figures in pretty dresses with trim waists trimmed with spotless aprons. The clean homes, smiling children, beautiful tables set with dinners and crazy molded Jell-O creations. Sparkling teeth, sparkling windows, sparkling water glasses that never were carelessly dropped and shattered on the sparkling waxed kitchen floor.
Mom quickly assured me those images were all fairy tales created to sell a product–an ideal that no one really actually lived up to. Her next comment, and my response, really opened my eyes to the biggest problem I didn’t know I had.
“Send them outside,” she said.
“I feel guilty,” I said.
My guilt shocked her. When my brother and I were kids, she always sent us outside to play so she could get her housework done. In fact, she’d lock us out there until lunch time so we wouldn’t run in and out!
I’ve been thinking about this conversation all day, and just a little bit ago it hit me that I’m trying way too hard at this Homeschooling Mother thing. I don’t know about you, but I think I spend a little too much time trying to figure out ways to entertain my kids. I see awesome stuff on Pinterest that I want to do with them. I collect books and project supplies and games that we never actually get to. I feel guilty because the busyness of life often supersedes the adventures I want to have with them.
But, really, I’m not here to entertain.
I’m here to nurture, protect, provide, and pray.
I spend so much time trying to plan and execute the next big thing, that I fall short in too many little things.
My kids spent a lot more time than usual outside today…and I got a lot more housework done than usual today.
And we all lived happily ever after.