Take time to make time.
Last weeks home schooling was tough. As usual Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday went ok. By Thursday motivation levels from the boys was at an all time low. And as usual my stubbornness and fear of not providing them with some kind of education took over, so we trudged on through.
By Saturday morning, I'd had enough of teaching, parenting, coercing, persuading, encouraging, telling, shouting, reminding, reprimanding, you name it I'd had enough of it.
I didn't want to be Mum/Teacher anymore, it wasn't good for me and it certainly wasn't good for the boys. Nobody wants a grumpy Mum/Teacher. I told the boys I didn't want to be this person I was turning into. I didn't like it and it wasn't fair on them.
I went for a run, came back had breakfast, showered then locked myself in my room with my laptop and books. Occasionally I was disturbed, I took a deep breath and tried to be nice when James asked about Oscar Wildes' quote I was reading. When he responded with, 'there's a spider on the ceiling', I gently told him to go out of the room and speak to his Dad or Brother.
I vowed to myself for the rest of the day I would take a break from being a Mum and Teacher. I will not remind the boys to do anything such as eat breakfast, clean their teeth, get dressed. They wont be reprimanded for being on electronics or for anything else they shouldn't be doing. I was not going to remind them they needed to read. No, that wasn't my job for the day.
I was surprised how many times I had to stop myself from saying something, it took a lot of strength not to but it also made me question why. Did I really need to say it? Does it really matter if they don't clean their teeth once? Would they eventually get breakfast anyway? So what if they go on electronics for a bit longer today.
I succeeded in having until three o'clock in the afternoon to myself, reading and researching. I felt peaceful and relaxed afterwards. Later on we went for a family walk to the fields nearby which has become my favourite place to walk around. An open field, with trees surrounding, a view of the canal, freshly cut grass with the yellow daffodils springing up, the fresh air. Perfect for the mind and soul.
The evening was sunny and warm. We returned home and sat in the garden together. The boys played a game of domino's, followed by James daring himself to jump in the pool. He eventually agreed to be thrown in by his Dad. The prosecco was popped open and a takeaway ordered. Takeaway consumed, Gin was poured and we held our own private disco in the kitchen. Drunken purchases followed and we now have a smoke machine, disco lights and a laser on order ready for our next private party.
Having time to yourself is extremely important. I didn't realise how much I needed a break until I was ready to break.
Make sure you can recognise the signs for yourself and take the time out you need and deserve. Only then can you give the care and support others around you need and deserve.