Thursday, March 12, 2015

Great mercy--every day

It's 11:16 at night and I should really be heading off to bed. These past couple weeks have been hard. I was telling myself: first Purim, then Pesach, then baby, but it is all scrambled now. I had to order Pesach products before Purim, and then I realized that putting off preparing for the baby till after Pesach is not smart: there is simply not enough time. On top of it all, I signed up both boys to take ITBS (standardized tests) with a homeschool group a week before Pesach. So now we are stressing over test prep. 8 yo lovingly abbreviated it to T.P. and 10 yo immediately deciphered this acronym into a more familiar form. I am finding all this math material that we did not cover yet. 10 is fudging his way through, 8 yo is melting down.

I remarked to my husband how now would be a good time for a summer break, or complete unschooling (coming shortly with our new arrival), or some sort of change. Obviously, trying to make Pesach on top of all of this is not enough. Oh, and all the kids need new shoes, both sneakers and shabbos shoes. 10 yo asked me the other day about four symmetrical holes in the sole of his sneaker, swearing up and down how he did not puncture it with a nail. I explained that it happened because he wore his shoe clear through the sole. And all boys need haircuts.

After much soul-searching, we have applied to Montessori Chabad school for 5 yo and 2 yo for next year. Now there is more and more paperwork to be filled out. And now there are finances to stress about.

The kids have not been on their best behavior. I have not been most patient. We are all stressed, only we all react to stress differently.

Just as I feel ready to throw in the towel (not on homeschooling, but on picking things up off the floor, or checking schoolwork at 11 pm, or trying to print from an uncooperative computer), it strikes me that tomorrow Hashem will return my soul to me, almost as a new being, and I will have a chance to start over again. I cannot promise that I say Mode Ani every morning with the most kavanah ( and I cannot promise that my kids do it, either), but this realization that tomorrow is another day, and tomorrow can be different, buoys me into putting a little bit more effort into planning HOW to make tomorrow different.

  • Don't yell.
  • Don't grump.
  • Take a breath before reacting to a situation.
  • Explain instead of expecting.
  • Go outside.

I will see how it goes. I have to return my soul to Hashem to see which gifts will be bestowed upon me in the morning.


  1. That's a great way of thinking about it. I've gotta try that!

  2. I have been thinking a little about behavioral psychology,
    and what you say sounds great: but I wonder if you have thought about
    stating it positively instead of negatively.
    "I will respond with love(or patience, or something positive)" rather than
    "I will NOT respond grumpily".
    1. having something to DO, rather than something to AVOID can be more
    helpful, more well, positive:-)
    2. it gives you a break too; maybe you did respond grumpily -- so? is not so bad if you also throw in the good stuff. if you are just trying to suppress bad, may be harder to remember to add in good.
    incoherently, and sleepily, yours
    homeschooling ema,