Monday, March 18, 2019

Saving Our Kids

There is a lot of pressure from the outside world to achieve and not mess up.  Even as parents, we feel the pressure to give our kids everything while making sure they don't lose their minds in the process.  And whether we say it or not, the pressure to parent well is far greater simply because their soul is on the line.  That's a lot to carry around.

So, we devise a landscape of opportunity for our kids - sports, lessons, camps, the latest everything so they won't be left out.  The trouble is that in the middle of all the going and doing is usually where the tipping point lies.  But with all the distractions of opportunity, we can miss the signals of a kid who is struggling.

One of the reasons we homeschool is the gift of time and how it allows to stay better connected to the hearts of our children.  If your children attend school somewhere several hours a day away from you, then the time before and after is incredibly important.  And not just to say "How was school?"  For some people (me!) it might take a little bit of digging before you get some authentic feelings about the world from your child, assuming you are looking for it.  The hectic schedule we create between practices and events - all of which may be great in and of themselves - produces a smokescreen of well-roundedness that is actually just busyness.

There are times in the year that are just busy no matter how you try to slow down.  When life happens in all forms, there is little you can do to avoid it.  What we can do, is take a few minutes to check in with your kids - really check in - to remind them of who they are, why they matter and how important they are to your family.  There will be struggles - if you don't see them then that's a sign of real trouble.  When you are present to manage the struggles together, you are bridging the gap.  Too many kids are trying to manage relationships, social media, academic pressure, etc. all on their own because of some perception that they are supposed to.  Living with a village mentality is not something that comes naturally anymore.  Instead, we have to create it - yes, even in our own homes.

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