I can’t tell you how many times in the last seven years of our homeschool journey that I’ve struggled with depression. The reason? Simply because I didn’t keep track of it.
There were countless days that I didn’t want to pull out the books, I didn’t have any desire to get up and homeschool my children. I wanted to crawl back into bed and stay there. Sometimes I did. Most of the time the kids joined me and we watched movies together. I felt better knowing that even if we weren’t homeschooling that at least they were spending time with me and weren’t alone.
Many days I did choose to get out of bed, though I didn’t want to at all. I knew that my children’s education was important and that it was my responsibility since I’d decided to homeschool them. Often we didn’t follow our homeschool plans on these days, instead we covered things that were simple and didn’t require a lot of thought from me. Spelling, art, reading and educational board games were always part of our days when I was homeschooling through depression. Other days I needed a distraction, so we would pull out the subjects that required me to think (Math, english, history and geography) because I needed to focus on something productive, something positive…and my children’s education fit both criteria.
My depression doesn’t seem to follow any particular season, it just shows up unannounced. That can make it difficult to prepare for, but I’m learning to put to memory how important it is that I not choose to stay in bed all day. I’m also learning the importance of getting outside as much as possible for our homeschooling during these times. Pulling out the books can be a good distraction, but the fresh air and just being outside in nature can be lightening to everyone’s spirits!
Homeschooling through depression is not easy, but it can be done. I’ve found that by focusing on my children and their education my depression seems to subside more quickly. When I put myself to work planning our homeschool days, preparing the lessons and teaching my children I have more energy and determination to put depression behind me than when I stay in bed wishing the day away.
Your depression may look different than mine, but we are homeschool moms. Our children depend upon us and we owe it to them to do our very best to get out of bed, (even on the extremely hard days), to ensure they receive the education we dreamed of giving them when we began our homeschool journey. They are learning from us each and every day, some day they may face homeschooling through depression just like we are and what they see us do will likely influence their homeschool journey in the future.
Whether you’re facing homeschooling through depression today or you have in the past, you know the struggles that you face. Make a list of them today so that you know exactly what you are up against. When we know what struggles lie before us, we are more prepared to take them on and defeat them. We may face depression throughout our homeschooling journey, but we do not have to let it take us down. We must choose to fight…one day at a time.
What has helped you to continue homeschooling through depression?