The beginning of a new school year is upon us. For me, there is excitement and hope for the possibilities that lie ahead, but there is also some anxiety. I often find myself wrestling at this time of year with feelings of insecurity. These questions go through my mind. “Am I teaching my kids enough?” “Have I done enough?” “Am I qualified to do this?” “What if I don’t teach them everything they need to know?” and even “Will I survive another year?”
I love most things about the anticipation of a new year. I recently wrote about all the reasons I am looking forward to the one coming up. What I didn’t write about was the nagging worry I have about whether I am good enough. This gift of being able to not only raise my children, but also being able to teach them is a blessing, but it can also feel weighty. I worry about all the potential ways I might mess up. What if I miss teaching them important concepts that they will need out there in the world?
But then the truth settles in for me. The only “concepts” my kids will really need to be successful in the world are having a strong faith and strong character. These are exactly the things that can be best taught by me at home!
I think it is normal for homeschool moms to worry about their abilities and to sometimes fall into the trap of comparing themselves to other homeschool moms and feel that they fall short. When I see all the wonderful projects and field trips that other homeschool moms are blogging about, it’s easy for me to forget that those same moms are probably stepping over laundry piles to get to the books, having moments of exasperation when unkind words come out of their mouths and wrestling with the same insecurities that I am.
As this coming year approaches, it is tempting to let my focus be entirely on shiny new curriculum, getting organized, finding great ideas on Pinterest, cleaning out the homeschool room, making exciting plans, and choosing our themes.
Those are all good things, but they are not going to be what makes this year a success if I am not focused on the most important thing…Jesus.
I just want to encourage other moms who may be wondering if they did enough last year, feeling guilty over plans that didn’t get accomplished, or worrying about the year to come. You are enough. You are what your kids need. Turn to the One who knows your precious kids even more than you do and ask Him to guide you and give you wisdom in your decisions. Turn to Him for the patience that you will need on the days that feel long or discouraging. Turn your homeschool over to Him and be guaranteed success.
Success doesn’t mean that it will all be easy or that your kids won’t argue over who gets the blue cup. Success doesn’t mean College scholarships. Success doesn’t mean perfection. Success means that when your kids are grown, they will know that they were well loved, have a strong faith that has become their own and be young men and women of character and conviction.