Maybe parenting strike is a more-apt description.
I know you see all the wonderful activities and great fun things we get up to but like everyone on social media, I of course share only a curated selection of my life. This is not because I want to be authentic but because I value privacy for my kiddos and my family in general.
What you might not see on here but goes on behind the scenes, is probably the same thing that goes on at your house too.
I get tired.
I get overwhelmed. I get cranky.
There are messes. There are fights and disagreements.
There are challenges
As a chronically ill person I get sore. Today I was VERY sore. So sore that I drove to our lovely physiotherapist's rooms so I could be fitted with a wrist brace to help immobilise the wrist.
When I'm sore, my patience level is lower and my fuser shorter.
As a mother in a neurodivergent family, we navigate sensory overload, autistic burnout and things that seems to trigger one another off. I am used to doing this and we have few meltdowns because we are able to read each other well but when I'm not firing on all cylinders, I'm the first to admit that things don't always function as well as they could.
Navigating my own health especially when in a flare and I feel like my body is waging war with itself, staying on top of medications and appointments for many people and trying to transition teens into the adult mental health care system (which is a nightmare) and so much more - some days it's just too much.
So today I called a strike. Not outloud. But I called it.
No decisions were made.
I asked for quiet.
I needed low sensory input. I raised my voice. I apologised.
No structured activities were organised. I went for a walk in our garden.
I made myself a coffee. I asked the kids not to speak to me for a while. The kids went outside and set up a ball toss game (like the one at the carnivals where you knock down stacked cans).
For the rest of the afternoon, one child went to planned activity and another worked with an older brother on a wood work project: making a corn hole game. By the afternoon, I was feeling better.
I cooked dinner for the family.
We chatted and connected once again. 'Homeschool-strike day' is sometimes necessary for me to be able to switch off while still being as present as I can.
You're not a failure if you need a mental health day.
You're not a failure if you don't do a million activities in a week with your kids.
Do what you can when you can. Homeschooling is a marathon not a sprint. Building strong relationships, caring for each other and loving well, and passing on a love of learning are some of the heartbeats of our home. Know that you're not alone if you are struggling. We all have hard days. Big hugs to you, friend. Lusi x