It’s a big time around here at the moment.
Start of a new school year in Australia, and one of my kids is trying out a new school. We’ve been homeschooling for close to two years now, and have been loving it. But then we checked out a little independent school and fell in love, and she wanted to try it out. It’s two days in, and so far so great.
It’s a big adjustment to all of us though – we all have to find our new routine in it all. We are still homeschooling one kid, and she is having to learn how to play independently for a few hours a day. We are still working out our schedule, and I’m looking for where to carve out some work hours.
I’ve had a snotty teared Start Of School Year Mama Meltdown (TM).
It must be a thing, right? I always feel panicked that I don’t have my optimum routine down pat on Day One! I don’t feel like I’m totally organised to be a school mama. And I don’t feel on top of our homeschool curriculum and work/life schedule either. But Mr D keeps reminding me… we have time, Leonie. Just take it slowly. One thing at a time. We will work this out too, just like we always have.
So here I am, at my little bamboo desk, chamomile tea on hand. Crafting out some time to create and write. Because if I don’t, it all becomes a bit too much. This life thing is INTENSE, yeah?
After we dropped off one kid to first day of school yesterday, we took the other one on a celebratory breakfast at a cafe. Then we strolled down to the river and watched fish glint in the water for a while.
The best thing I’ve learned from my parenting journey so far is to let go of the belief that things have to be a certain way. Let go of any cults of belief that there is only One Right Way to raise or educate a child. And instead just do what is right for you and your kid. And so often what is Right changes over time too, and what is Right differs for each kid too!
I’m just going to keep turning up. Keep doing the right thing for me, and for us. In whatever way that looks, whatever name that has. And trust in the great beauty and wonder of it all. That my kids will get what they need out of these experiences. And that we will too.
That doesn’t really have anything about what I wanted to talk about today, but I felt like I couldn’t NOT say it, yeah?
But then, that’s what we’ve always done here together: deeply personal with a touch of business/goals/life shenanigans.
I wish we could sit for a cup of tea in the grass and you could tell me about your intense life too.
Here’s what else I’ve been thinking of lately:
Now my Academy has closed to new customers + will formally retire in October, I’m in a place for the first time in eight years I can create something completely new outside of the Academy container.
E-courses! Group coaching! Books!
All the creative possibilities!
And there’s some ideas brewing there, but I must admit, for the first time in a loooong ass time I am feeling timid. Timid of jumping back in that creative saddle again, giving birth to a whole new vision.
I know it will happen, I just have to trust that I can ride the wild donkey… I’ve done it hundreds of times already! It’s gotta be muscle memory, right?
How is my No Spend Experiment going?
Pretty swimmingly, to be honest.
You can read more about it here.
Now that spending is not an option for me, I just redirect my energies elsewhere. I’ve definitely managed to be more productive in the process.
Plus, I am REALLY enjoying the process of reading all my unread books at last. The only hiccup is that with some books, the reason they are unread is because I started them and they were shit. And I popped them down, hoping they’d improve over time, or that maybe I was just in the wrong mood to read them. Upon picking them back up, they are still shit. I forced myself through one of them just to finish it.
From now on, I will give a book twenty pages to improve, and if it doesn’t, it will go straight to my Book Release pile (these usually end up with a friend or charity).
The incredible thing I’m discovering is that SO many of the books are PERFECT for where I am right now. I’ve already read 50 books in a month, and feel like I’m giving myself a mini MBA as I’m doing it. My levels of knowledge + confidence are HUGE compared to where I was a month ago.
So – possums – if you’ve got books on your shelves… READ ‘EM!
They are there to help!
How am I, really?
I have a friend who says: “But how are you REALLY?”
And you know that you can let it all drop down and just be as you are. Just tell the truth, and let it be enough.
How am I, really?
Up and down. Around and around.
Life – in parenting, marriage, ageing parents and the rest – is filled with days of contentment and gladness, and days of complication, pain and mess. As Glennon Doyle would call it: “it’s brutal and beautiful – it’s brutiful.”
I want to cultivate grace and stoicism in all of it.
And fortify myself with lashings of time with myself and creativity. Those two things are the best medicine I know for all that ails me.
Plus I keep on thinking of what my darling Deb says:
Row, Row, Row Your Boat really gives you all the messages you need for your life. There’s so many layers of deep meaning in it! Listen:
Row, row, row your boat
Gently down the stream
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily
Life is but a dream.