Synchronicity seems to be the name of the game for this chapter. I was on a trip this week for work and I took a long a different book The Not So Big Life by Sarah Susanka for reading on the plane. I know, I know, a real, paper book, but they don’t let you read e-readers during take off and touch down and that’s when I need to read the most. Anyway, this book touched on a number of topics including that people have a deep need for both belonging and significance. It also identifies the fact that people need time or space to be on their own for a bit to restore their deepest intuition/soul/being, whatever you choose to call it.
In the parenting course that P and I are taking Positive Parenting Solutions the absolute core principle of the course is that every person needs a sense of belonging and significance. Failure to provide those two things are what result in most of what we view as misbehavior. Since she talked about this part in the free seminar I attended, I don’t think I’m giving anything away here, but believe me when I say there is a lot more to the program and we’re really learning about ourselves and our parenting by doing this. You can also read her book, If I Have to Tell You One More Time… if you’d rather. The book is a condensed version of the course — a sort of desktop reference, if you will, but if that’s all you have time for I cannot recommend it highly enough.
The other thing that both Susanka and McCready talk about is the importance of time. McCready is focused on time with the child, but seems also to suggest that parents need some time to themselves as well. So imagine surprise when Clarkson also suggested that an important component of her life is her “alone” time. I found this somewhat surprising in the light of the last chapter where she was discussing the submission of will and the idea that she sacrifices for her family. It almost seems contradictory to me, but then I realized that it’s truly not.
We do make significant sacrifices in order to homeschool our children and to bring them up in the way that we want them to go, and to some degree or another one of those sacrifices is our ambition or some of our personal/professional goals. But it doesn’t mean a total sacrifice of self. As she pointed out in this chapter, even Jesus took a break from the multitudes once in a while.
When I think about that I realize that it’s okay that sometimes I need that break. I need that refreshment of spirit in order to be more available to my family and more able to demonstrate and embody the values that I want them to learn/absorb/practice. I need to learn to not feel guilty about being away from them and to focus on the refreshment and engagement with God that I seek as I take that time.
Books mentioned in this post:
To see how others are responding to this book check out Home with the Boys and the link-up at the bottom.
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