We’ve been paddling through some expected stuff; and we’ve held our breath and maneuvered some unexpected stuff. The water has been pretty choppy lately.
To be fair, there have been some calm pools that allow us to float on our backs, feel the warmth of the sun, and catch our breath. The bitter and the sweet must be what they mean by balance?
When it comes to homeschool… ha! There are no better lessons than the ones that have been handed down lately.
- How to drive nonstop, through the night, and arrive without killing each other.
- How to read a map, navigating construction sites and detours, without blowing a grommet.
- How to acknowledge that, “Yes, dammit, we are lost. How do we get back to where we are supposed to be,” without crying and downing a seventh cup of coffee.
- How to drive in big cities without freaking out. (Or, how to let your teenager drive in big cities without either one of you freaking out.)
- How not to absorb the anxieties of others swimming in the same rapids.
- How to show compassion when our own nerves are frayed, and we’ve yet to catch up on sleep.
- How to accept help when offered. Better yet, how to ask for help.
- How to be humble in the face of crisis.
- How to put our own agendas aside when need be.
- How to make the choice to laugh when it would be much easier to cry.
- How to be okay with crying, when crying is all you can do.
Public schools don’t teach these kinds of lessons. Hell, these kinds of lessons aren’t on our daily lists either, but we’ve been doing some serious learning while dog paddling.
And, we’ve become excellent dog paddlers.
On a lighter note, it’s been funny to watch the narcissist’s reactions during all of our swimming. He can’t handle the fact that none of this is about him. We’ve gotten some much needed comic relief when he tries to find a way to make it about him.
He offered money, his vehicle, and words of encouragement. We’d already made a plan – one that he even tried to annex – so we declined his offers. Then, when we had regrouped, we did ask for help. He wasn’t so inclined, because it wasn’t his idea… then.
Lesson: Narcissists can be quite helpful when it’s their idea. But, remember that their offer of help is a way to get the attention back on them.
Life will get back on track. Experience proves that it usually does. The swimming helps us realize which part of the track is worth keeping, and which part is easy to leave in the rear view mirror.
I couldn’t ask for better company – Will and Jen – during all this swimming. Their biggest lesson is realizing that they can indeed keep their own heads above water, and it’s okay to lean on each other while doing so.
*Some dear family members have recently faced scary health issues. As of this writing, I could not be happier to report that they are recuperating nicely.