We wake the girls up for our new Friday morning routine and discover that both had thrown up on their pillows in the middle of the night. The good blogger that I am, I thought about snapping a picture.
The good blogger that I am, I decided against it and took the sheets down to be washed instead.
My morning had started five hours earlier when I woke up with the distinct impression that I needed to throw up. So I headed to the bathroom. I didn't, but those thirty minutes "on the pot" weren't all that pleasant; I would have preferred to have been happily sleeping.
Things weren't going well and it wasn't even 7:30 yet.
Then, I got a call at about 9:00 telling me that the main line of my house had clogged and water was filling the laundry room.
It's been a long and rather frustrating day.
Oddly enough, this is a benefit of homeschooling: Our kids get to experience life in the real world. They get a genuine experience. They see us at our best and our worst. We get to introduce them to the Plumber and explain how he helped fix the toilet so we can flush it again. They see us rip off the sheets in frustration to then tromp off to the basement. They get the good and the bad.
Sunday school teachers, instructors, coaches, anyone in a professional or paraprofessional leadership role will tend to present the world as stable and under control. In fact, this is such a common experience the two exceptions I've encountered in my life stand out in stark contrast. And while this professionalism is essential to a public situation, that's not where most of us need improvement. We're all pretty good at behaving in public.
Homeschooling allows our children to learn from how we handle stress, frustration and disappointment. They go through the experiences with us and learn how to cope. Sobering thoughts for those of us still in the process of learning how to roll with life's punches.
I'm writing this post to remind myself that even days that start off not so well are excellent opportunities for me and my children to learn and grow together. And if it turns out that your three month long project in the basement wasn't ruined, you had a coupon for half off the plumbing service and you were taken out to dinner by some friends, perhaps it's important to celebrate the blessings of life as well. I'm not nearly grateful enough because I'm too often focused on dealing with the things that went wrong.
So, here I am, at the end of one of those days sitting back and thinking, "Life is good."
Filmmaker, Writer, Surrogate Father