Recently I received this as a comment to my post 'Living Out My Dream', and wanted to share my response with the rest of my readers. Anonymous stated:
This was so encouraging to me. I stay at home and is what I really want to do and I am so thankful. Yet day to day it is hard sometimes. I have a question for you - this is my 2nd year to homeschool our 9 year old and I have a 19 month old and one on the way and sometimes I just feel so overwhelmed and all I have time for is school & homeschool activities (our daughter would rather be in school and misses having friends so I feel like have to do as much as can with other people and it is still isn't enough for her). So I don't get to do stuff at home as much as I want and I don't feel like I spend as much time as I should with my baby - you know actively teaching her things too. So how do you balance everything?
Here is my response:
It is wonderful to hear that you have taken on the mighty task of homeschooling. I share your desire to do a good job especially in teaching each child well, but here is where I'd like to challenge your thinking: You do not have to feel guilty and do so much to appease your older daughter. It is a wonderful thing to learn contentment within the home, being busy with your hands (or minds) for that matter and not filling your schedule to the brim. This will only lead you to early burn-out in your homeschooling and lead your daughter to falsely believe that true happiness comes from being entertained with activities or always being social.
You will want to create a home atmosphere that is God-centered and not child-centered. There is a tendency for parents to lose their balance of this by trying to please their children and always seeking to make them happy. Sometimes, for their own good, a child needs to learn that they will not get their own way and learn to be content with what the Lord has provided them. Like Scriptures states--"Godliness with contentment is great gain." This brings them onto greater paths of maturity as they realize they are not the center of the universe. It also helps to cultivate the mind frame of serving and not being served. Not stating that this situation is the case, but I have seen many instances where it was. And believe me, you don't want to go there.
Just the fact that you are overwhelmed, not having available time for your baby and home is a warning sign. Take heed and begin to make changes today, your daughter (and family) will thank you for it later. Also take some time to read some of my past posts such as The Beauty of Balance, Choosing What's Best, Cultivating the Rich Christian Home and What Kind of Home Do You Have? to learn deeper about created a balanced Christian home that blesses all members and rooted in God's Word. My prayers are with you as you aim to build your home for the Lord.