The kids and I set our hoard of library books on the counter when all of a sudden I hear “Esther! How are you doing? It’s so good to see you!” There she was, that sweet familiar face and smile I’ve seen for years. I first met her from our old Farmer’s Market days in town. She always bought my big fluffy rolls, a jar of jelly and a pie.
We begin our 11th year of homeschooling in about a week and a half. It’s a hard thing to swallow. Yet again, another summer is already fading into the uttermost parts of what will be a memory.
In Defeating Homeschool Burnout Part 1, we looked at 12 ways to help better DEFEAT the ugly burn that is caused by what I call “Homeschool Burnout”. We’re going to jump right in, and look at 11 more ways to help any of us finding ourselves trying to overcome the sting.
Homeschool Burnout: [ hōm′sko͞ol bern´out ] emotional and physical exhaustion resulting from a combination of exposure to environmental and internal stressors that involve teaching (one’s children) at home, while simultaneously keeping house, washing mountain loads of laundry, cooking dinner, wiping noses, carrying a baby on a hip, keeping a toddler entertained and being a good helper to a husband. In addition to signs of exhaustion, this type of burn exhibits an increasingly negative attitude toward the choice to homeschool in the first place, low self-esteem, and personal devaluation, second guessing, and threats of putting kids on a bus, is often associated with homeschool burnout.
Homeschool Burnout always finds us at the most inconvenient of times.
I have been breathing borrowed air.
I am no longer who I use to be.
I struggle daily to love like Jesus.
Daily I ask, why did we choose this?
The pain of losing, yet gaining, plays with my soul.
Moment by moment I feel the real struggle; die to self.
My heart has been invaded with the faces of children, who aren’t mine – who haven’t been claimed, by anyone.
We’re asked”why?” “Why would you do this?”
One minute, my heart bursts with exuberant joy.
The next, my heart breaks into millions of pieces, as tears invade my face.
It’s true, my heart has been, disassembled.