This may sound funny. But... I have 5 children and am struggling right now. My younger 2 are freshly 3 and 14 months. My older children, I say older but they aren't that old, lol... are freshly 12, 9 and freshly 8. I feel outnumbered. We have bad habits, to say the least. We are all lazy. Somedays we do school and some days we don't. I have battled depression most of my life. Especially the last 12 years. It definetly gets worse after having a baby. I am on meds now... finally. And am starting to feel a little better. But I don't know where to start. My children aren't terrible to the worlds standards. We actually get complimented alot when we are out in public. But I know their hearts. And they are not pretty. I just ordered Sonya's MP3 version of Reaching Your Child's Heart. And I am also reading Sheparding a Child's Heart. But I just feel, like I've said, outnumbered and defeated, hopeless. Any words of encouragement or wisdom here???? Anything you have done that might be helpful to a Mom in this situation? Thanks for reading!
Feeling Outnumbered(6 posts) (5 voices)
Oh Nina, please know you are not alone! I only have three and feel outnumbered many a day! My #2 and #3 are twins and they are exactly two years (by a week) younger than my oldest. There have been many days I have felt utterly defeated and completely inept at being a godly mother. I don't know that there is anything specific that I have "done" but I do know that when I am feeling this way it certainly reminds me that I can do nothing apart from Christ (being a mom included here) and that I must wholly rely on him for strength - it keeps me on my knees. I have to remind myself that God does not give us more than we can handle, he equips us with every thing we need for good works, he daily bears our burdens, and freely gives wisdom to all who ask (I left out references b/c they were not on the top of my head as I am getting mine ready for bed now and everyone is melting fast in the background as I type). I just encourage you to pray without ceasing for wisdom and strength and trust in God's promises - he is always faithful to do what he says he will do! Let this be a time to draw closer to Him!
Nina- i"ve been off the group for awhile because I just had my 6th child 2 weeks ago, but I felt I needed to encourage you. My oldest is 15, then 13, then 11 (with Asperger's- high functioning autism), then 6, then 3, then newborn. I may not be able to check back on the forum, so feel free to PM me.
First of all, remember that it is a season you are in. It will not always be as hard as it is now.
And the whole training process IS a process. It will not happen overnight, but it happens slowly, day by day as you train them.
There are many days when we get nothing "schoolish" done here because we are dealing with horrendous behaviors from my 11 yo. But the Lord has always encouraged me...better that they are home in a loving, Christian atmosphere. They are learning all the time. I count it a good day as long as I've read the bible with my children and prayed with them at breakfast (and throughout the day as needed).
I have learned to stop "beating myself up mentally" over not having the perfect homeschool. Last year was what I thought was the worst ever year homeschooling (especially with my 11 yo dealing with lots of health issues) and when I tested him and the older children (our state requires testing but we don't have to report scores) they all scored almost perfect on their tests. It is so true that when you seek first HIS kingdom (which is what you are doing by homeschooling and training them) everything else will be added unto you.
I too have battled depression and anxiety my whole life. It keeps me on my knees. And I've had the Lord renew my mind and my thinking....it's so easy to focus on the negative of how far you have to go with training. I encourage you to write down what you are doing right...and you must be to get compliments from strangers when you are out.
I stopped reading all those parenting books that say what the children "should" be doing and when. Your situation is unique (as is everyone's) and I only felt more burdened by feeling I could not live up to the ideas presented. But you know what, you don't have to! I encourage you to seek the Lord alone and He WILL lead you.
We have similar aged children, with the exception of your toddler. I have a 12 yo dd, 9 yo dd, 7 yo ds, and a 2 month old ds. I have had many of the same thoughts you have expressed. I don't have any more advice than what has already been said but I wanted to let you know that many of us struggle with the same things. I had to come to terms with the fact that I can not be a perfect mom. Baby woke up, so gotta go. Hang in there! :o)
Hi Nina, just wanted to say that although I only have the two daughters - our homeschool has been severely dented the last few years with crisis like hurricanes and now struggles with my daughter who is quite ill. We have missed a lot of schooling and we have just accepted that they will graduate a couple of years later than their peers, because they need the extra time to be fair to them. You will most likely get into a routine over the next few years, but if in the end you need an extra year or two, that will be fine. Every family is different and if my daughter was in PS she would still have missed all that school and been way behind because of her illness and because of the storm and subsequent evacs and moves. So we just accept that as part of our life and move on as best we can when we can. I don't want to add stress to our already worrying and stressful lives so we accept that our family is doing things differently - and we try not to let it worry us. It is only when outsiders look agahst that we are still doing high school and my daughters are 18, that it feels odd - but we ignore them. The HSLDA told us it was the right thing to do and that we should take as many years as we need to let them get done - illness and life happen and you cannot do anything.
The point of this is to tell you not to beat yourself up, start some consistent training lessons with your children, utilize Sonya's wonderful resources, and move forward a day at a time. You will get there and if at the end one or more of your children need extra time, let them have it - don't worry about it. God bless - Linda
Thank you all for your very kind replies. I definetly needed to hear many of the things said. Especially about it being ok if we need a few extra years before they are ready to "graduate". I have been really stressed with my oldest. Thinking of all the times we have switched curriculums from this to that, etc... And him being behind because of it. I really need to focus on habits right now. So I guess if we need some extra time then that is what we need to do. Thank you all again!!
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