Happy belated new year! So 2021 started off with a bang eh? No celebration and a fast track into national lockdown. What a total clusterfuck!
I find myself homeschooling yet again and as I learnt from the last bout of it I struggle immensely juggling 3 kids at home while trying to teach two at very different stages of their education and keep a 2 year old entertained. I, like so many other parents, put huge amounts of pressure on myself to be all things to everyone but what I did learn from the last lockdown is that it is an impossible standard that I simply can not maintain. With this in mind I am approaching this period of imprisonment with less expectation, less pressure and a realistic mindset. I can not be full time parent and a full time teacher all while trying to do my actual employed work from home. NO ONE CAN!! I am trying my best to muddle through and my mantra is basically to not be so hard on myself when I fall short.
I can not tell you the difference in the results with this new attitude. I have been honest with the kids and explained how hard it is for me and that I need their help with it, I think seeing me in a situation where I don’t actually know what the hell I am doing has spurred them on to want to help and they have been are being amazing. They are muddling through as well and I am so proud to see that they are actually learning something from me – I can take no real credit as they are bright kids and the wonderful teachers at their school have laid the ground works, so really I am just maintaining the knowledge that they have…topping them up and ensuring that they do not become gaming zombies in the (hopefully) brief covid interim….
I have to teach them one on one – there is no other way and I have to teach them separately, again there is no other way. So while I take on one the remaining child takes on the toddler…in essence we are all in our own purgatory the only real winner is the damn toddler who is, by a mile, ruling the roost and loving every damn moment!! The older 2, when we stop for the day, are for the most part playing really well together and the best investment we made last year was the Nintendo switch because they play on that together all the time. I have decided to stop fighting screen time, I mean let’s face it there is fuck all else for them to do – their school is shut, their friends at a distance, the clubs on pause. If I take away their screens as well what is bloody left??? Gaming is an amazing way for them to play together and connect with their friends and I must admit if we had all this available when I was their age I know I would loved it!
I know we are all struggling and this post has turned out to be much more poignant than I set out for it to be, but do you know what I think we all need to hear it….We are doing ok, even if we feel like we’re not, we absolutely are. This shit is hard and exhausting but it won’t be forever. We have to have faith in ourselves and remember that we can only do our best and muddle through – and drink wine, did I mention to drink wine? This is essential…this is my Nintendo switch, and I have decided to not fight my screen time either….chin chin my fellow merry band of homeschooling parents. We will get through this!!!