Yes, I know the drowning metaphor is now overkill, but it really shows how I feel these days; attempting to struggle to the surface to breathe but pulled down by unseen hands. From the moment I wake to the instant my head hits the pillow, the past few months have been a constant struggle. I'm hauling a 20 pound baby up and down the stairs, holding her struggling body to keep her from eating and ripping up everything, trying to get the older children to be peaceful and get their schoolwork done, attempting to keep Timmy's pants dry, and all the while being pulled at and shouted at, and fussed at by 6 children. I don't have a moment's peace. Ever.
Yesterday, even with a babysitter in the house minding the little boys, I googled the local Catholic school and actually called them. I'm sure I sounded hysterical, "I can't take any more!" and then made it worse by accidentally dropping the phone down the stairs ('cause of course I was carrying babydoodle too). I don't really know what sending them to school means since they haven't been since nursery school, but I know it means getting everyone out the door by 7:30am, packing lunches, helping with homework (sometimes taking as long as we do during the day now), and uniforms.
It also means a change in status for me and I'm not sure I like that part. No, I don't like doing the job of 6 people all by myself and I don't like feeling angry and stressed out all the time, but homeschooling has been my life for 6 and 1/2 years now and who am I if not a homeschooler? If we do this I want it to be a stop gap solution for the next year or two. I really love teaching my kids at home, but I just don't think I can do it with 4 kids, a toddler and a baby, no family, and a husband who works 12 hour days. What if I really like them in school (and out of my hair)? What if they do better away from me? Does that make me a homeschool failure? The only thing worse than seeing them flourish is if they fail. What if they can't do the work, make friends, fit into the parochial school culture? What then?
We expect a call from the principal next week and an interview/testing to follow shortly. I'll be writing lots of questions and fretting a great deal in the meantime. Please keep our family in your prayers.