Sometimes being a mom is hard. Sometimes being a homeschool mom is REALLY hard. It’s a constant battle, a never-ending push and pull. I often describe it as a working mom and a stay at home mom, colliding head-on. The fragmented mess that is left is the homeschool mom. Don’t get me wrong, most of us wouldn’t change our “profession” if we could, but it can be taxing, to say the least.
The last two years have been especially hard on this momma. My kids were both at trying stages in their education; one learning how to read, and the other moving on to harder math subjects. I was faced with health issues and struggled to find my balance between our “social” life & our home life. Eventually, I had to get real with myself. I needed a “mom check-up.” I evaluated where I was: physically, mentally, & spiritually. Many things had to change, and I didn’t love what I found. Three areas, in particular, stood out.
My first self-checkpoint was to evaluate my physical health. Was I the best version of myself, or was there room for improvement? Friends, I didn’t love what I saw. The cold hard truth was disappointing, but only I could change the situation.
Physically, my health was on a downward spiral. I had suffered from muscle and joint pain for close to three years and faced constant exhaustion. Chronic hives had plagued my body for over a year. I was nowhere near my best self. This was my first “self-check,” because until you physically take care of yourself the rest will be hard to accomplish.
Ever so slowly I started changing my diet. I became a Trim Healthy Mama, and lost 25 pounds. Slowly exercise became part of my weekly routine. Sleep started to be a priority again. I’m still not where I want to be, but I can’t believe how much better I feel. Recently my family completed an aerial obstacle course. There’s no way I could have even climbed that first ladder a year ago.
(Related Reading: Healthy Habits – The Marathon Approach to a Healthy Diet)
The second level of the evaluation was my spiritual state. Why was this not the first? In all honesty, it was because my physical state was so bad that I couldn’t even consider where I was spiritually. My goal has always been to be found doing the Lord’s will. The problem was I literally couldn’t.
When things were at their worst I would go days without reading my Bible, and my prayer life was more of a “Lord help me” than a serious one. I began to pray earnestly for my physical health, but my prayers needed feet, so to speak. Luke 11:9 says “And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” See how it all requires an action on our part? That can’t be a coincidence. I began to read my Bible daily, turn up the Christian tunes, and fill my life with his Word.
I believe that a mental self-check is an important one, especially for a busy homeschool mom. Many times you have long days, with a distinct lack of adult conversation. Life pulls us in several different directions, all at the same time. Sometimes we just need to step back. I was cranky, and mentally worn down. Slowly I made some changes to regain my sanity. A weekly date night with my husband became a priority, and I started reading “just because” again. Little by little life was fun again. Be honest with where you are mentally, and make a change if you need to.
(Related Reading….Rediscovering You)
Many times I think the best measure of a self-check is to ask yourself, am I living or am I existing? I was existing. Sometimes we need to re-evaluate our purpose in life, then start living towards that goal, while making sure to have some fun along the way. My purpose is to always be doing the will of God, and for now, that means raising my littles. I can’t fully give to my family without being my best self. So sometimes we may just have to stop and do a serious self-check. It’s okay to be a broken mom, everyone gets there now and then. The problem comes when you fail to take any action to fix it. Be the best version of yourself….for you, for them, & especially for Him!