Please be forewarned that the Sap-O-Meter runs a little high in this post. It's just that while I was watching my children practice their handwriting, math problems, science terms on the vintage butterfly TV trays set up permanently on our back porch, I began swallowing the enormity of this decision to keep them home, and though I'll admit there was plenty of indigestion (especially when Mary screeched about any and everything while I was trying to help with assignments), there was also this unmistakable taste of relief sweetening even the sour attitudes practically double dog daring me to stop with my bare hands the next school bus passing by in order to shove my crabby students through one of its open windows.
I was afraid, very afraid that by giving in to the dissatisfaction that came from rushing my kids out the door on weekday mornings, barking at them to finish their homework in the afternoons, exposing my Orthodox Christian Children to who knows what - I mean...really, who knows? I wasn't there! (Just a few weeks ago, Elijah looked me dead in the eye and said cryptically, slowly, "Mom, I learned a lot from the kids in my class.") - by devoting my "free time" to educating them myself, I would jeopardize my writing career, become resentful, and ostracize all of us in the process.
One can only fight so long, however, the naggings of the Spirit, which, let me be clear here, I do not believe are always universal or formulaic but rather intensely personal, specific, and revealed to open hearts on an "as needed" basis (or in other words, before every situation and conversation one encounters) before coming unglued. All my desires became oppressors when my role as a "mother who'd sacrifice anything for the good of her family" was watered down to a "woman with children looking outside the walls of her home for legitimacy."
Though I have no idea what the future holds, it is certain to be fraught with tears and trials - trials I will only endure if all I want, more than wealth or notoriety, is to be smack dab in the middle of the will of God, immersed in the lives of my husband and sons and daughters - living for others besides myself or my fickle, foolish, dreams of finding fame, fortune, and fulfillment (greener grass?) "on the other side."
2 days ago