I adore my children. I really do. We have had a lot of fun spending time together during this whole time of stay-at-home, shelter-in-place, quarantine, or whatever you want to call it. We have played games and watched movies and cooked meals and done projects. We’ve had fun!
But I gotta be honest, this distance learning at home thing is not for me.
I simply don’t have the patience. Or the brain power. Or the desire. Or the energy. Or the patience. Did I already say that one? I mean, I have my own things to do and think about. Somedays, I can barely manage myself, much less make sure my child is staying on task with all of his daily assignments. And let’s just be real – my son can be a major jerk when it comes time for school work. No thank you. Not interested in taking part in that.
Does this make me a bad mom? I’ve really wrestled with this because it feels like I’m a bad mom. It feels like I should be able to manage this with ease. It feels like I should be happy to do this. But I can’t and I’m not.
The truth is, this doesn’t make me a bad mom. It makes me an honest mom. It makes me a normal mom. It makes me a mom who is good at some things and not good at others. I happen to not be equipped to be my child’s teacher. We homeschooled for a year when they were younger. We learned way back then that sending them to school was the best option for us. So why have I been beating myself up now because I’m struggling to deal with school at home?
There are plenty of things that I’m good at. I’m going to try hard to focus on those things rather than focus on the things that I don’t do well. I will continue to do my best with this school at home thing because it’s necessary right now. And because I care. Of course I care. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t help at all. I wouldn’t make sure any of the schooling was accomplished. But I can only do what I can do, and that has to be enough for now. As long as I’m doing my best, I can be proud of myself. I can feel like a good mom.
As for the rest? Well, I’m learning to ask for help. In our house, we have three other people who are capable of helping with the youngster. And they do. We also still have access to teachers who are able to help. In fact, this morning my son has a video conference set up with one of them. I decided to let her help him rather than having a fight with him over fractions. Winning!
Parenting isn’t all fun and games. Sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do. For me, this schooling thing is one of them. It’s a big relief to allow myself to admit that I don’t like this and that I’m not so good at it. Pretending like I’ve had it all together and am loving this particular phase of parenting isn’t helping me or anyone else. We’ll get through it, hopefully with some sanity still intact. And with a little luck, we might even have a few laughs along the way.