One thing you can predict about life is that it’s unpredictable. You can’t anticipate every life situation that comes up. Life goes on with broken bones, health scares, funerals, financial difficulties, you name it—all while you’re homeschooling. How do you continue to stay diligent when truly all you want to do is go back to bed? I think we’ve all asked that question.
I’m not sure I have all the answers. But I do have one answer—God. During seasons of difficulty, I press into Christ, asking Him for the provision I need, the wisdom I need, the energy I need, the daily portion to walk one day out.
Here are some lessons I have worked on for homeschooling through the hard seasons:
Get into the Word, no matter what
When I am feeling depleted of life, it is easy to want to skip time in the Bible and prayer. I have to remind myself to do it anyway. Sometimes it’s just one passage, one sentence, one page. But stay rooted in The Word. This month I have been carrying a Scripture in my pocket as a reminder and pulling it out often.
Take care of yourself
When the world feels like it is crumbling around you, the last thing you want to do is eat right, exercise, and rest. But that is exactly what you need. Be your own loving mom. Remember, some is better than none. Sitting outside in the sun, taking a walk to the end of the street, drinking a glass of water, taking a nap—any little thing you can do that feels nurturing, do it.
Usually when I’m feeling anxious, it’s because I’m in “ninja worrier” mode. In those moments, I try to really focus on the now. Notice your breathing, devote your full attention to the task you are completing, and pray for God to take your burden and help you carry it.
When “stinkin thinkin” hits, when all I can think about is how horrible things are, I focus on gratitude. I try to name as many things as I can that I am grateful for. Sometimes I do this with my child so we can both be encouraged however small the thing might be. It’s amazing how noticing God’s goodness changes things.
Invite your children to step up
When I’m struggling, it’s easy to think it’s all on me. Ask for help, even if it’s just a little thing. Your kids see you stressed, and they often don’t know what they can do to help. Invite them to partner with you, even if it’s just feeding the dog, making their own checklist for the day, or reading for 30 minutes while you rest. Ask the neighbor kid to help with math or review. Be creative in enlisting help.
Never underestimate the power of life lessons
Sometimes the school day needs to be scrapped when a family crisis happens. When my mom was alive, we would all jump in the car to take her to the emergency room or to provide urgently needed help at home. We did life together. My son has so many experiences and memories of caring for her—so many stories of her funny ways and little eccentricities that he never would have had if we hadn’t lived out so many moments together. I’m grateful he knew her deeply, and I know that this life experience will never be lost.
Remember, this is just one season
Seasons come and go and remember that a difficult season in your life is just a season. Sometimes you need to set schoolwork aside to manage a crisis. Sometimes you can only listen to an audiobook or do school in the car. I know there will be brighter days ahead, and I cling to the promise that God will be faithful in His care for my family and me. He always has, and I know He always will.
I know that when the burden is too much for me to carry on my own, He will carry it. But it requires me to surrender it to Him, to rest, pray, trust, and ask for one daily portion from Him. But in my depths, I know these types of moments are exactly why we homeschool. It is through weathering the storm as a family, trusting in our God and walking the days out together, that we grow deeper in Him. I have to remember that this too is learning. It is learning that no matter how hard life gets, we have a Savior that can overcome anything.