and so far the day is moving along. 1/2 of my homeschooled boys has finished his work while the other asked to do it after some outdoor play. So many times before today, I would have made him wait and it would have been miserable. Anger, tears and fussing. Not to mention my little one's behavior.
I love homeschooling for many reasons but this is probably in the top three. I can make a decision as my boys mom/teacher that he just might need to climb some trees and dig in some dirt before he does his schoolwork. He will ultimately do better, more willingly and it will be a much better experience than if I sat him in the chair like a taskmaster. I know, as the mom of three boys, that getting some movement in early in the day can make everything better.
My oldest, who happens to be recovering from autism, completed his work first. We are still lighter in our load as we prepare for the beginning of Sept. to get it all in gear, so today's work was Math and copywork/spelling. I was having to handle some issues with my youngest so I left my oldest to his math. In the past, I would have come back to the table to find him either stalled in his place or moving at a snails pace. Today was a different story. I approached the table and he was waiting patiently for me. I said to him, " I need you to keep going please." He simply sat there and as I got closer to his book, I noticed that all of the problems were done and all of them correct. I looked at him to find a smile slowly spreading across his face as I exclaimed, "you finished the page." He was extremely happy about my discovery and excitement. All of this is more remarkable when I reflect on how this exchange could have gone. You see, when I told him that he needed to keep going, he could have, and in the past probably would have, responded with, " I did keep going, I'm all DONE". He would have been frustrated at my request because he had done it all. He showed great self-control and an obvious understanding of the timing of this situation. Autism is slowly disappearing.
I was reflecting to someone recently that the old adage of one step forward, two steps backward was not really our experience on this road to recovery. I feel so much more like it's continuing to move forward but that sometimes we have the privilege of being on the smooth path and sometimes our trip forward takes us uphill, through the rocky terrain and even the dark valley. We are still moving forward but sometimes it isn't nearly as smooth as I would like.
Here's where autism has helped a great deal. Autism has given me great perspective as I mother/teach my two other boys. The understanding of the rocky terrain is just as important for my "typical" boys as it is for my child on the autism spectrum. Life is full of bumps in the road. What a blessing to be able to see the progress in the midst of the rocky times.