Back to school means getting back into an evening routine. The days go by so quickly because by the time I pick them up, I have less than three hours to spend with my boys. Our routine consists of picking them up from school, having dinner, homework, half hour of television (if they’re lucky), baths, putting on pajamas, brushing their teeth, and reading bedtime stories. You can see how every minute counts.
And for Jonathan being in elementary school, I can’t believe how much homework they give him. The material he is expected to know is incredible! I personally think it’s a bit too much although I know how behind in education we are as a nation. Sometimes I think the demands for a first grader are too much and I don’t want him to be so pressured. I can see it in his demeanor when he rests his head on his left hand or simply says, “It’s too much,” and I agree.
I remember thinking how I wanted to work on some basics with Jonathan during the summer. Well, summer came and went. What happened? I just realized I needed a break too. Not only do children have demands during the school, but parents are also required to practice the teaching material at home with their children. I, too, got caught up on the stress of Jonathan’s everyday homework even when he was in kindergarten. Summer came and we all needed a break.
Now fall is here and we’re back into a routine, a routine that I know will bring structure and consistency. Lights out are at 8:00 p.m. and on my Friday night, Merlot time comes just as soon as the boys are asleep. Now that’s a routine I can get used to.
Guiding Lesson: Eve, I tend to agree with you that the amount of work that kids are given at school is too much. I see how much pressure is placed on them as well as you. Do you ever wonder why the nation is really behind in education? And are you solving the wrong problem correctly or the right problem incorrectly? From my perspective, it doesn’t appear that all the children are receiving the same education. If this is true, are they expecting the ones that can attend good schools to make up for the children who don’t have the same opportunities?
Well, since we can’t solve the world’s problems right now, how about we focus on what is around us . . . the great season of fall. What a wonderful time this is! This season has many lessons to teach and guide you, if you only stop and observe the beauty all around.
Look, Eve, do you see the changes around you? Listen. Do you hear the season calling you? Feel. Do you feel the manic weather being caught in the middle of summer that is not ready to let go and winter that is beckoning to appear? The past and the future, the timeless dilemma of our lives. Where do you focus? The past brings a smile of warm memories as well as stirs up old hurts and wounds. The future brings us hope of dreams waiting to create a better future as well as stirs up anxiety of uncertainty. However, does anyone take time for the present moment? Even the seasons take a while to adjust and sometimes it seems like they are battling to get more air time. Accepting and living in the present may be the most difficult task to ask of anyone.
Eve, how about you? Where do you live? The old, the new or the present? What demands are you letting go so you can enjoy the moment? What dreams are you hoping for that give you energy in the present time? If you believe that every minute counts, then living in the present is where you will receive the greatest return on investment.
Since it is fall, take time to shed whatever you can so that you can spend more quality time with your children and ready yourself to make room for the future. Start by decluttering the world around you at home and at work. How about your relationships? Who is life giving and who is life draining? What about the foods and beverages you consume? Do they nurture your body, give you more energy or give you a sugar rush just to come crashing down? Don’t forget to evaluate how you spend your time? Who gets the “Best You” in your life? Who gets the not so “Best You?”
The fall is a great reminder to free yourself from old ways and trust that in the letting go there is abundance and treasures to be received. So as you begin this process, I want to challenge you to release, relinquish and renew your world with reckless abandonment. Make room and open up all channels for Grace to flow through. Begin now and enjoy the journey.