I hesitated to post about our homeschool summer plans a couple weeks back because, well, plans and I don’t really get along. My record for keeping to a set homeschool schedule is three weeks. At that time, I’d dreamed of a six weeks on, one week off calendar.

This time, I lasted two whole weeks. While it is summer and I’d only planned homeschool light, the incident reflects what happens often during our school year. Things come up–school gets delayed. I used to envy those moms who managed to run their homes with efficiency. I have the capacity to be organized, but it rarely lasts. In the past when I slid off the self-prescribed path, I would berate myself.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more comfortable with being the woman God made me to be. And that woman is not so good with the plans. Here’s why:

I’m relationally-oriented not task-oriented. Aside from my natural inclination to love people and want to spend time with them, God gave me the spiritual gifts of mercy and encouragement. For me, someone in need takes precedence over a plan. When it’s clear my boys need a break from the rigors of school, we’re going to take a day off. Or when the opportunity to spend the week with the grandparents and attend a beloved cousin’s birthday party pops up, school ends up on the back burner.

I’m creative. Let’s be honest–Creative types tend to follow whatever whim inspires them at the moment. Ideas consume me and steal my focus. I’m unable to work on a project a little at a time. If I get interrupted, there’s no telling when I’ll finish it. When Peck comes to me inspired by the science experiment we just finished and wants to figure out how to modify his Beyblade with balloons, I let him. The set lesson plan pales in comparison to the learning process of innovation.

Academics are important, but, for me, other things are more important. As evidenced in our homeschool mission statement, scholastics are fourth after faith, good choices, and creativity. When an opportunity to expose Peck to those other areas arises, I’ll switch our focus to that. Back to the week at Grandma’s that derailed our summer school plans, Peck learned to make good choices. Specifically, he learned to wear a swim shirt after getting a burned back at said birthday party.

Yes, but…

  1. Age also gives me perspective. Not every person’s need is an emergency. God has taught me to triage situations, determining when the plans should override people. Peck does need academics and, if I put them on hold every time something else comes up, he’d never finish school. Don’t neglect the importance of balance.
  2. Thankfully, God made all of us differently. I should never assume everyone needs do things the way I do. Respecting my uniqueness doesn’t mean I can’t learn from women that God wired differently. I may have trouble with plans, but I can glean tips from those organized homeschoolers.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is this–embrace natural talents and gifts God gave you, learn how to incorporate them into your life and homeschool, and stop comparing yourself to someone else.

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