Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A little Longer

Water bottles have been filled, just right, and brothers and sister lay softly between Angry Bird sheets and an impressive collection of lovies.

Their room has finally hushed and I am preparing myself to change gears; gathering last minute things before work. While doing my best to mouse down the hall, undetected, I notice Young Mister Myles on his knees, peering out the window and down into our driveway. My attempt at being light footed has paid off— he doesn't feel my presence at the door.

In a whisper, so as not to wake Ailish and Silas, I ask him if he is waiting for me to leave.

He answers my question with one of his own. It's almost a whine, really. He is desperate to know why I have not gone yet. I eliminate the possibility that he is plotting a hostile take-over in my absence and come to the conclusion that he's just so very tired. He's so very tired, but he's willing himself not to sleep. He suspects that he might be losing, but he doesn't want to miss waving good-bye to me from his perch.

My heart melts and I consider how Goodbyes have been a theme for us lately.

After years of homeschooling my children, we put the boys in school this fall. I may have convinced them that this was their own idea. They have been good students and sweet little boys for their teachers, but even so, I have seen signs of taxing. Once amiable, they are cranky and fight constantly in the evenings for lack rest. Ironically, we don't even have time to read together anymore. Our Monday through Friday's relationship has become just that, a Monday through Friday relationship — strictly about business — a family going in a million different directions. Reading and life have become all about the mechanics without regard for the story.

I have cataloged the expressions on my sons' faces as I have forced them out the door when they have not been feeling well; when they have dug in and tried to tell me that they just did not want to go. I have allowed their days to start with unnecessary tension that they have had to carry into the rest of their day, just because I've packed our schedule too tight, and they are making me late for the next thing on my list of things to check off.

Today I am withdrawing them from a wonderful school with wonderful teachers.We are bringing Thank You cards because I have none of the classic home school vs. public school grievances. For us it is about listening to what our children are trying to tell us about what they need. There may be a time for classrooms later, but I have to be willing to acknowledge that maybe this isn't it.

I want us to live a good story, not just do things because it is what 'everyone' does.This season in their life is short and I don't want any of us to be so exhausted that we have to will ourselves awake to experience it.

This post is linked up with The Extraordinary Ordinary's Just Write.

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