Monday, March 24, 2014

weary; it's end of term

We are crawling towards the end of the school term, noticing a shift in the seasons and subsequently, a change in our bodies. Che is home from school today; sniffly and croaky. Nothing drastic, just the exhaustion of two months at school and three weeks to go. Such a long term!

When I peeked into his classroom last week I noticed a few vacant chairs. It happens around this time every term; tired little bodies and minds ready for a few weeks of slow mornings and no plans. I find I'm extra mindful of him at the moment, mindful of my exhaustion, too. 

The three of us have done pretty well these past 10 weeks; establishing our own rhythms and comforting each other when the missing has been overwhelming. We're nearing the end of this journey now, with less than four weeks to go (no definite date yet) and so I'm embracing the opportunity to do things our way; if we're a few minutes late for school - so be it. If a day at home is required, we'll rest and read and eat soup for lunch. 

I find the school system, in general, isn't overly supportive of home days and rest time. But time at home is essential to mental and physical wellbeing and when it's required I succumb. Last week we needed to get a late note from the office and when the secretary asked me what my reason was I said: "embracing slow." She wrote: "running late". Perspective.

I imagine I'm not the only one experiencing a lull at the moment. Take care, go gently.


29 COMMENTS

  1. Do you read Dig This Chicks blog? She has just written a blog post very similar to yours x

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    1. never heard of it but will check it out sometime soon x

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    2. I thought the same thing! Guess this feeling is pretty universal right now.

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  2. My Sunny was home on Friday too and liked it so much that she wanted to stay home today :) If I could I'd keep her home every day! School has been a transition in the way everyday life runs for me too. We're planning our days for the upcoming holidays though. I hope Che is feeling better soon.

    Sophie xo

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  3. As a former teacher, I know oh so well that fatigue and utter exhaustion that children (and teachers!) feel towards the end of term. The curriculum and expectations on children and teachers alike seem to increase all the time so I firmly believe in listening to your child's needs and a home day now and then will have no negative effect whatsoever! In fact it helps! My mother was a firm believer in rest or school free days when warranted and I'm the same!

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  4. I'm a big believer in mental health days. I was just thinking about you yesterday, wondering if Daniel had a flight booked yet .... 4 weeks probably still feels like quite a way, I hope it flies for you. Kellie xx

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  5. Similar here in the workforce, I find myself being guilty for staying home for 1 day, sick. No matter what. It's a sucky feeling, to feel sick AND feel guilty about it. Why is that? I love watching you three transform while Daniel is gone, it'll be so rewarding! Keep it up!

    oolretaw.com/blog

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  6. oh, i hear you - and totally agree! my little kindy girl has just been getting more and more exhausted so i decided to keep her home on friday for a quiet day of pottering around in the garden and chalk drawings in the driveway. it was just what she needed... and well, having her around a bit more was just what i needed too :) rest days are so important, especially in these early years of school. I would rather them keep going happily with a few breaks than slugging it out every day to an emotional breaking point for them!

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  7. HA! I can just read your file at the school file: Hippie Mother. And here the: 'pfft! Embracing slow'.
    I'm good at recognising when a mental health day is needed but putting my head down and working through it anyway. I should have done it last week but soldiered on through to lecture for 10 hours straight, I couldn't form coherent sentences by 6pm.

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  8. I just loved reading this post. (I did one on slowing down last week actually). I just love the pace and of course simplicity of what talk about in your blog. Thank you for sharing so much in such simple words and photos. I will be coming back. Often. Kenza (all the way from Mexico!)

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  9. oh no!, it was a sore throat...hope he's feeling well again soon. I too am noticing how the school system is critical of missing days. I was made to feel guilty by a teacher last year because my boys had to keep having days off because they kept getting sick. I think we need to remember that we're talking about children here. It was lovely catching up with you last week, I hope we can do it again soon.xx

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  10. I love this post, can relate so much. :-)

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  11. I'm feeling it too and have scheduled my own "sickie" or as I prefer, "mental health day" for this week (I'm a teacher! so I can imagine how the poor kids are feeling). 11-weeks is an exhausting term.

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  12. As a former teacher (of teenage boys) I am a strong believer in the benefit of rest days for both body and mind. So much so that I would make it a recommendation to the parent that a rest day (or two) was in order. I also think that those occasional days where the parent surprises the child and they take the day off together to spend at the beach or some special adventure is equally valuable. Amazing how some time and care helps a young mind continue to grow and learn.

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  13. I find myself thinking about schools for my 18 month old & wonder if i should consider 'alternative' schools like Montessori or Steiner since mainstream schools are less likely to be in line with my views, i think a day at home to recharge is necessary & should be support ed. I love that you told the office lady that you were 'embracing slow' I can just imagine the shaking of her head.

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  14. haha, embracing slow! I love it :) It makes me sad when I read these accounts of school tiring kids out, not in a good way. Mine aren't at school age yet but i'm already thinking about the approach we're going to take. Did you ever consider home schooling, just out of interest?

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  15. Love that "embracing slow"...schools definitely don't get that concept. xxxx

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  16. This was me last year with my kindy. We were late many times but I did have a newborn. They would send roll call a half an hour later the first term so I wouldn't have to face the tough front office ladies then the next term I had to face them. My kindy also had many days off throughout the year and I "homeschooled" him creatively and yes we ate lots of home cooked soup. I was called up to the office to sign a special form for all the absentees so I would avoid a possible investigation. Luckily for me the primary school principal and teacher understood my holistic approach. I will have to write "slowing down" next time for my reason for being late. Thank you!

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  17. Lovely post Jodi!
    Miss 4 has started preschool this year and we are noticing a new kind of tired. More than daycare. She also often goes to after school care, which seems to be heaps of fun, but tiring too. (A trade-off for removing her from daycare - allowing me to still meet work commitments.)
    For the last week and a half (and for at least the next few days); my mother, who has moderately advanced dementia, has been staying with us. It was totally unplanned, we had about a day notice. It has really added a whole new level to my tired. Although I am more than happy to have her stay,we have so many commitments already.
    I hope you all had great benefit from "embracing slow" today, and get to reap the rewards!

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  18. I love that, "embracing slow". Home days are so important for our family too, it keeps everyone balanced and peaceful. I hope these next 4 weeks go quickly for you all.

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  19. This is our first year and school and I am overwhelmed by the exhaustion of the whole family. Our principal said it was ok to have a home day if the kids were exhausted, I really appreciated that.

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  20. Yep, on the countdown....so close but still yet so far. You've done well, it's hard solo parenting and add in school to that, uniforms, lunches, homework, notes, activities...it all adds up. We've only got this week and next week left to go for Term 1 in Brisbane and we need a break. It's so great that we get 17 days off (including weekends) as two years ago this break included 4 days off school + the Easter weekend.......totally not enough. Hang in there you can have some schedule jammies day shortly...Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia.
    PS...how is the photo books coming along !!!

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  21. Rest days are so important. I often think that the 'shoulder' seasons are for just that. Our school encourages 'mental health days' (which always makes me chuckle). I like to give the children a home day, separately, each term. Just for regrouping and pausing for a while. x

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  23. No wonder children are so tired and tend to fall apart when they get home (Home devils/school angels) they are exhausted.Too much for little people a long week and early mornings, I fully support taking a mid week break every so often, even every week when they are first starting, they need it!

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  24. "Embracing slow"--I love this! I wish society as a whole was more supportive of a slower rhythm, and of resting the mind and body when needed. It does wonders for my family when we consciously slow down :-)

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  25. Lovely. I hope when my boy gets into school age I am able to remember to "embrace slow"!

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  26. "Embracing slow" reminds me of my mother and her approach to life. As well as family life/time being a blessing, I told her about this post and she thought it was nice to finally hear of someone who feels the same way after she's raised 6 kids and seen so many people seem to just accept how society continuously rushes everything along with little care for patience and understanding of families and things that come up in their lives. I really admire this post, very nice

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