How Do I Manage?
We recently discussed being able to manage the workload of being a homeschool mom – parent – wife – sister in Islam, etc. etc. There are many homeschool mother’s who absolutely amaze me with all they are able to get done. Some I know personally, and others I follow on the web. However, I have come to realize (Alhumdulilah – for my own sanity) that everyone’s situation is very different and so are their abilities and responsibilities. So, while there are other homeschool parents that do more than me – I am quite content knowing that I am doing the best that I can do, alhumdulilah.
So, how do I manage? This is what I responded with . . .
I homeschool only two – with a three year old to entertain. It is not always easy. I used to be very active in many things but I had to cut back. Everyone’s situation is quite different – as I have learned in life. Everyone’s capabilities are also different and unique. That’s why I have had to neglect my blogging, my writing, and my many other interests. I really miss doing those things – but I also enjoy the knowledge that my children will grow up (and quickly L) and I will miss all of this if I keep myself too distracted. I enjoy that I am there while they are learning – every step of the way. And I don’t just sit there while they are learning – but I actually try to see what things we can do differently – and in what ways can I make their learning more fun and meaningful. Anyway – this doesn’t mean that everyone has to cut back on everything like I did – but it was necessary for me – in my situation. Not only am I trying to homeschool – but I also have a house to take care of (and a busy, messy 3 year old to chase after, masha’Allah!) – and I also am trying hard to take care of my health by regularly working out at the local women’s gym. It doesn’t seem like a lot – but it is time consuming work!
I am not homeschooling with my own curriculum – but my kids attend a virtual school (K12). The schedule and the work can sometimes be overwhelming by itself. However, I feel that it is a good educational option for my girls and myself as their teacher. I am a great ideas person but to set up my own curriculum I would be spending way more of my time planning and less of my time teaching it – always trying to perfect everything. That is just my personality flaw, I guess. Thus, I really like K12 because everything is ready for me. I also like K12 because I am accountable to someone. I know that may sound strange – but it helps me keep focus and to stay on track when I have to get things done by a certain time. I could do that for myself as well – but then we get into that problem again with planning, but not doing. So, while the workload can sometimes be a bit much – especially now that I am homeschooling two kids – I do enjoy it in the end. The kids love the school and the work. They also love that since I’m not planning things – I have more time to see when they need help and to provide supplementary materials. All in all – it is a perfect fit for us.
The reason I explained my curriculum choice is because I really think that is why I have less time available to me. If I were to homeschool year-round it would be a bit different. That’s the way I wish it could be – but it isn’t. I would think we would have a bit more time for things, insha’Allah – but Allah really knows best. Alhumdulilah – the girls are learning a lot – and I am able to protect them from harm by keeping them at home – and I get to spend every minute with them while they are growing up – watching them laugh, play, learn and grow – I wouldn’t miss that for the world.
So, in my case – I have given up quite a bit – but there will be a time when my creative juices will flow again, insha’Allah. Perhaps I will finally write that book or get back to blogging again. Allah knows best what is in store for me. However, I don’t regret making the choices I have. And, as I said, the choices are different for everyone. The circumstances and environment is different for everyone. The only thing that matters is that we are providing a warm and caring environment for our children to learn – a place where they can grow to their potential – a place where they can learn their Islamic heritage and duties as Muslims – where they can learn to be confident about who they are and where they can learn to strive every day to be a better Muslim than the day before – and a place that they can truly feel safe and loved. If we were to die with only those accomplishments – I would think we have accomplished quite a lot in our lifetime. And Allah knows best.
Sumayyah Umm SAA